The United Kingdom has approved the world’s first trial to infect volunteers with COVID-19 – dozens of healthy young people will be deliberately injected with the virus to further study the mechanism of its effects on the human body, Bloomberg writes.
About 90 healthy people between the ages of 18 and 30 are being recruited to participate in the two lines of research.
The first should help determine the factors influencing the conditions of transmission of the virus – the researchers want to find out what the minimum amount needed to cause an immune response.
The second involves injecting volunteers with drugs proven to be effective in treating COVID-19. Test participants will then be “infected” with the coronavirus to determine the immunological response needed to protect against reinfection.
The experiment has been approved by the British Clinical Research Ethics Committee and is scheduled to take place at the end of March.
The World Health Organization said this type of research is important because fewer participants will be needed to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of the vaccines being created. They also help provide information on pathogen and risk factors.