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GVN Center and Member Spotlight – Aydar Ishmukhametov

GVN Center and Member Spotlight

Aydar Ishmukhametov

Chumakov Federal Scientific Center for Research and Development of Immune-and-Biological Products of Russian Academy of Sciences
Moscow, Russia
GVN Center Director

What are you and your institution currently working on regarding COVID-19

At the Chumakov FSC R&D IBP RAS, we developed CoviVac, an inactivated vaccine against SARS-CoV-2, which has been registered and approved for use in Russia. In association with clinical centers, we are currently conducting Phase III trials, including in elderly populations. The trials aim to establish the criteria for administration of booster immunizations for the long term.

Summary of Research

In the early stages of SARS-CoV-2 research, we isolated several strains of the virus from clinical samples, which laid the basis for the development of the inactivated vaccine.  We performed phylogenetic analysis of all available sequences of the virus variants circulating in Russia at the time. We further conducted epidemiological analysis of COVID-19 incidence to evaluate the molecular epidemiology and pattern of virus spread in the territory of Russia.

During the early stages of vaccine development, we established several rodent and non-human primate models producing the main phases of COVID-19 pathogenesis in humans.

Overview of The Chumakov Center

The Chumakov Center was established in 1955 as the Institute of Poliomyelitis, which combined research laboratories with vaccine manufacturing facilities. The Center was created by Dr. Mikhail Chumakov who at the end of 1950s organized the first production of oral polio vaccine from strains developed by Dr. Albert Sabin and demonstrated its safety and effectiveness. The vaccine was exported to more than 60 countries and stopped massive outbreaks of poliomyelitis in Eastern Europe and Japan. Our research in other areas of virology resulted in the development of several other vaccines, such as vaccine against tick-borne encephalitis, canine distemper, yellow fever, rabies and others.

Today the Chumakov Center conducts a broad range of studies of different human and animal viruses and manufactures, besides polio, rabies and tick-borne encephalitis vaccines, supplying up to 70% of national demand in these products. Yellow fever vaccine produced at the Chumakov Center covers more than a half of UNICEF Eliminating Yellow Fever Epidemics (EYE) Strategy, supporting immunization in more than 50 countries.