A London-based company is offering volunteers approximately $4,600 to be infected with the coronavirus.
A London-based company by the name of hVIVO is offering volunteers £3,507 ($4,588) in cash in order to be intentionally infected with the coronavirus, COVID-19. The research organization's purpose is to create a definitive vaccine for the disease which has taken the lives of over 4,000 since its conception in Wuhan, China in Dec. 2019. With countries scrambling to take precautions against the life-threatening virus, there are now approximately twenty companies around the globe in search for a vaccine against COVID-19, according to The Times. Justin Setterfield/Getty Images
For those interested, hVIVO is currently searching for at least two dozen volunteers who would be willing to be infected with the coronavirus and monitored at the Queen Mary BioEnterprises Innovation Centre in London. According to The New York Post, the human guinea pigs will be given a pair of the weaker strains of the virus, 0C43 and 229E, which will most likely cause mild respiratory problems for the participants. Following their intentional exposure to the virus, they will be new and old vaccines in order to determine which combination of medications are the most effective and most responsive.
During the volunteers' time infected with the disease, they will be mandatorily quarantined for two weeks, eat a restricted diet, and avoid participating in any strenuous activity including exercise. hVIVO's chief scientist, Andrew Catchpole, had this to say in a statement about utilizing human test subjects:
"Drugs companies can get a very good idea within a few months of starting a vaccine study whether it’s working or not, using such a small sample of people."
hVIVO will begin their study as soon as they receive authorization from the UK's Medicines & Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency.