Anti-Covid nasal spray ready soon
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Anti-Covid nasal spray ready soon

Developed locally to 'global standards'

A locally developed nasal spray for preventing Covid-19 will be available for public use by September.

Deputy government spokeswoman Rachada Dhnadirek said Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha praised the joint project responsible for developing the nasal spray.

Experts in pharmaceutical and medical supplies from Chulalongkorn University, Silpakorn University, Health Systems Research Institute (HSRI), the Government Pharmaceutical Organisation (GPO) and Siam Bioscience worked together on the project.

The group signed an agreement on Feb 28 to jointly develop the spray.

One of the goals was to push Thai innovation and research efforts to meet international standards, Ms Rachada said.

The nasal spray will be available to the public for sale in the third quarter, she said.

Rangsee Patlee, GPO deputy director, said the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had granted a certificate for the production of respiratory-care medical supplies which permits the distribution of the nasal spray solution developed by the GPO.

The anti-Covid-19 nasal spray is also certified by the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) for medical devices, he said.

"As our facility has passed ISO requirements for medical supply distribution, we can guarantee that the production of this anti-Covid-19 product is safe and of good quality," Mr Rangsee said.

Ms Rachada said that in addition to the nasal spray, Gen Prayut had praised the GPO for developing the second Thailand Covid-19 vaccine, HXP-GPOVac, which has now gone through its first and second clinical trials.

Lab results indicate it can ward off the Omicron variant, she said, adding it is being considered for approval by the FDA.

The GPO will press ahead with a third trial and distribution could begin by mid-2023.

Ms Rachada also gave an update on ChulaCov19, an mRNA-based vaccine developed by the Chula Vaccine Research Centre at Chulalongkorn University and the King Chulalongkorn Memorial Hospital in Bangkok.

Tests have shown its efficiency matches the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, she said.

The ChulaCov19 vaccine is now undergoing a third clinical trial and if the FDA approves its use, it will be ready for public use by year's end, she said.

Ms Rachada said such developments in biotechnology reflect the potential of Thai scientists and the strength of the country's health system.

Even though Covid-19 will become endemic, the development of the vaccines is still needed for future use, she added.

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