Health minister Saeid Namaki said Tuesday that the vaccine developed by the Pasteur Institute obtained emergency use approval earlier in the day after successfully completing various trial stages.
“The third phase of the clinical trial for the Pasteur vaccine, which is the second Iranian vaccine (against) coronavirus, has been carried out, and today we were able to obtain the permission for its emergency use from the legal committee,” said Namaki.
Cuban Vaccine Candidate Soberana 02 Starts Trials in Iran
Iran approved its flagship Coviran Barekat vaccine for emergency use earlier this month. The Pasteur vaccine has been developed as part of joint trials with Cuban scientists, who created the original version, Soberana 02.
The approvals come as the government seeks to accelerate its vaccine program six months after it began using supplies from other countries, mainly Russia and China, as well as from the World Health Organization's COVAX initiative.
A day after Iran started domestic production of Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine; the country has unveiled another homegrown recombinant vaccine called Noora.
Nearly six million shots have been delivered to the elderly and the frontline health workers in Iran, and almost 1 million people have received a second dose to date.
Health authorities hope the number of vaccinations will reach 13 million by mid-August.
Iran has three other COVID-19 vaccine candidates, including two developed by scientists from the country’s armed forces and one by the Razi Vaccine and Serum Research Institute, an established state-run pharmaceutical company.
Given the inhumane economic sanctions imposed by the United States, the Iranian government has relied on home-grown talents to tackle one of the fiercest outbreaks of coronavirus throughout the Middle East.
Health ministry figures published on Tuesday put the daily death toll and number of confirmed cases at 142 and 12,717, respectively.