Vladimir Putin expressed confidence that Russian coronavirus vaccines are able to cope with new strains of the disease.
The head of state spoke about this during a meeting with the head of the Federal Medical and Biological Agency (FMBA) Veronika Skvortsova.
“As I was told, the vaccines we have today effectively work against these strains, which scare everyone in Europe today, and not only in Europe,” the president said.
He added that trials of these drugs that interfere with the virus demonstrate that vaccines are effective against these strains.
Skvortsova, in turn, expressed confidence that the test systems available in Russia work with any strain of coronavirus.
“We checked all our systems, including in case any changes or mutations appear in the S-protein.
It must be said that the promoters, the active part of our test systems, are so correctly chosen that in fact the mutation does not get into them, so they work with any strain, ”she said.
She also said that in total, 3.5 thousand coronavirus mutations have already been identified in Russians.
According to her, we are talking about mutations that do not matter for the course of coronavirus infection.
At the same time, according to her, there are seven mutations, the prevalence of which exceeds 5% in the Russian population.
“Of these, four are in the S-protein in the spine, but none of them are in the receptor domain.
And in this regard, the receptor domain in our population has not been changed, and all our vaccines - both Sputnik and the vaccine produced by Vector - work well, because antibodies normally bind to this site without changes, "she stressed. ...
© REUTERS / Alexander Ermochenko
The drug "Mir-19"
Skvortsova also said that FMBA plans to complete the first phase of clinical trials of a drug against coronavirus called Mir-19 by mid-March.
She noted that we are talking about a unique drug based on the use of microRNAs that block certain sites of the RNA virus.
According to her, microRNA is absolutely safe for humans, does not affect the human genome or immunity, but at the same time it effectively targets the virus.
“In addition, it prevents the most severe forms of coronavirus infection, including preventing pneumonitis, acute respiratory distress syndromes against the background of coronavirus infection,” added Skvortsova.
She explained that clinical trials started after the New Year, but their first phase is going "especially carefully, because you need to prove safety."
According to Skvortsova, the first phase will end by mid-March, after which work with patients will begin.
Demand for Russian vaccines abroad
The press secretary of the Russian President Dmitry Peskov said that there are many requests for the supply of vaccines against the coronavirus, but the production capacity of Russia does not yet allow satisfying all requests.
Earlier, the media reported on the request of Czech President Milos Zeman to start supplying the Sputnik V vaccine to the republic.
Peskov noted that the Russian side "is very sensitive to such appeals."
“The Russian side takes a responsible position in terms of ensuring that as many vaccines as possible are delivered to different countries of the world that will experience problems with the vaccine.
There are so many applications that so far the production capacity does not in fact allow satisfying all of them, but the production turnover is growing every week, ”he stressed.
The spokesman for the head of state added that the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) is promoting the vaccine and technological satisfaction of all these applications.
Latest incidence data
Over the past day, 11,571 new cases of coronavirus have been detected in Russia.
During the same time, 11,277 people recovered.
At the same time, 333 people died from complications that developed against the background of COVID-19 and concomitant diseases.
© Zykov Kirill
Since the beginning of the pandemic, 4,257,650 cases of COVID-19 have been recorded in the country.
Over the entire observation period, 3,823,074 people recovered, 86,455 deaths were recorded.
In Moscow, 2097 new cases of coronavirus were detected per day, in St. Petersburg - 943, in the Moscow region - 629.
According to the Moscow headquarters, 1,541 people recovered in the capital per day.
Another 714 people were hospitalized, 42 patients died.
According to Rospotrebnadzor, over 111.3 million laboratory tests for coronavirus were carried out over the entire period, including 314 thousand in the last day.
560 186 people remain under medical supervision.