President Yoweri Museveni is today Wednesday January 27th 2021 set to launch the clinical trials of UBV-01N, a Covid-19 therapeutic drug.
In April 2020, The Natural Chemotherapeutics Research Institute (NCRI) presented its proposal to the Presidential Scientific Initiative on Epidemics (PRESIDE)- which is a think tank of scientists with a core mission of developing products and tools to respond to COVID -19 and other epidemics.
Led by Dr. Grace Nambatya Kyeyune, the NCRI researchers proposed to produce natural chemotherapeutic products to treat viral and bacterial infections.
During the scientific hackathons, the NCRI researchers presented the literature that proved the scientific concept of their proposal and they were funded.
Since April 2020, the researchers have worked through all the rigorous processes to come up with a scientifically proven product that is ready for clinical trials now.
“The government through the Ministry of Finance, provided funds that were channeled through the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovations (MOSTI) to procure equipment and meet operational costs.
Today we are witnessing the first clinical trial of a highly scientific process to analyze and validate a natural product anticipated to have antiviral (kill viruses), anti-inflammatory (reduces over reaction of the body to infections) and immunological (directs the immune system in the right direction) ability” a statement from PRESIDE reads.
The clinical trial will validate the content, standardization and replication of the product after which it will be rolled out for industrial production and wide spread use. The product has already gone through multiple quality assurance steps and got all necessary certifications and approval for use in human beings in a clinical trial setting. A highly competent team in Mulago Hospital will conduct the trial.
The product code is UBV-01N. It is the first Ugandan natural chemotherapeutic product to go through an international level clinical trial process.
The National regulatory authorities that have approved the product include; National Drug Authority (NDA), Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) and National Council for Science and Technology.
“The launch of the clinical trial is a big milestone for the natural chemotherapy industry and giant step for Ugandan Scientists. Today is the convergence point between the conventional medical fraternity and the natural chemotherapy, which is going to revolutionize the pharmaceutical industry and the private sector in the country. The results of the clinical trial will be internationally accepted because a good team of clinical trial experts have been instituted” the statement says.
The research team include Ugandan scientists based at Natural Chemotherapeutics Research Institute, Ministry of Health in collaboration with those in Makerere University School of Medicine, Makerere University Lung Institute, Makerere University School of Public Health, Mulago Hospital and Presidential Scientific Initiative on Epidemics (PRESIDE).
The study is aimed at enrolling 128 participants. The target participants will be adult males and females aged 18-70 years with a positive COVID-19 test and admitted at Mulago national referral hospital. For female patients, they should not be pregnant or breastfeeding or intending to get pregnant during the period when the trial is taking place.