Nov. 25 (UPI) -- China's coronavirus vaccine developer may not have filed for regulatory approval, despite Chinese state media reports suggesting that Sinopharm subsidiary China National Biotec Group was planning to bring its product to market.
The South China Morning Post reported Wednesday a CNBG executive said an earlier report from Chinese state-owned Xinhua Finance was "inaccurate" and no application was filed with the government.
CNBG has pushed aggressively for human trials and has developed two inactivated vaccines. Inactivated vaccines, composed of dead or inactivated viruses, do not provide the protection of live but attenuated vaccines.
The firm has tested with human subjects in 10 countries across Latin America and the Middle East, and recruited about 50,000 people for phase three or final-stage trials, according to company chairman Yang Xiaoming.
In July China's drug regulator, the National Medical Products Administration, allowed CNBG vaccines to be used on high-risk groups. Recipients of the vaccine include construction workers, Chinese diplomats and students in more than 150 countries.
CNBG operates under Sinopharm, also known as China National Pharmaceutical Group, the state-owned enterprise behind the vaccination of 1 million people in China, according to CNN last week.
Sinopharm chairman Liu Jingzhen said no incidents occurred during the trials.
"In emergency use, we now have used it on nearly a million people. We have not received any reports of serious adverse reaction, and only a few have some mild symptoms," Liu said.
Liu suggested Chinese citizens overseas were at higher risk for the novel coronavirus than in China, where the government previously claimed it had won the domestic fight against the highly infectious disease.
China has yet to allow a team from the World Health Organization to deploy to the country to inspect the city of Wuhan, the epicenter of the first known outbreak of COVID-19.