Are you sick of being healthy? Would you like to experience the coronavirus firsthand?
Look no further than the Queen Mary BioEnterprises Innovation Centre in London, which is looking for 24 volunteers to inject with the dreaded coronavirus and participate in their flu camp.
They will be paid about $4,588 for their troubles.
This isn’t the latest twisted Stephen King novel. Rather, it’s an attempt by medical research and development company Hvivo to create a vaccine for the deadly disease which has killed more than 3,800 across the globe.
The human guinea pigs — who will receive a battery of tests before being selected — will be given two of the virus’ weaker strains, 0C43 and 229E, which should cause mild respiratory symptoms. They will then be given new or existing vaccines.
Doctors — who will wear protective clothing and ventilators — will analyze the patients’ responses to the vaccine, and the results will help researchers focus on the most effective treatments in order to fast-track them.
Aside from the actual downside of being sick, participants must stay in quarantine for two weeks, eat a restricted diet and avoid human contact and exercise.
The East London-based company is just one of 20 firms joining the global race to find a vaccine that could be ready by next winter, reports the Times of London.
“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,” said Andrew Catchpole, Hvivo’s chief scientist.
The testing will begin once Hvivo gets the go-ahead from UK’s Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency.