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Cuba vaccine set for roll out

Regional 29 Jun, 2021 Follow News

Cuba’s Abdala vaccine is 92 percent effective

Cuba's health authorities have announced that the domestically produced Abdala vaccine has proven to be 92 percent effective against the coronavirus in clinical trials and they expect to roll it out soon.

In a measure of its ambitious efforts to be vaccine self-reliant, Cuba has named one of its home-grown jabs Abdala, after a famous dramatic verse by independence hero and national icon Jose Marti. In the verse, the young hero, Abdala, heads to war to defend his fatherland, full of patriotic fervour no matter how strong and powerful the enemy.

From the perspective of many Cubans, it's the perfect name for the first COVID-19 vaccine to be developed in Latin America. And the perfect imagery for the story of a tiny island of 11 million inhabitants, eager to show it can't be broken by a deadly virus and a 60-year economic blockade by the United States, and a country that boasts several brilliant scientists of its own.

One of them is Gerardo Enrique Guillen Nieto, 58, director of biomedical research at the Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (CIGB) in Havana where Abdala was developed.

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