A potential coronavirus vaccine is being trialled on 40 people in Adelaide on Friday. In an Australian first, two doses of COVAX-19, or a placebo, will be injected into the individuals between the ages of 18 and 65 at the Royal Adelaide Hospital’s clinical trial unit. The vaccine candidate was developed by Adelaide-based company Vaxine, which has laboratories at Flinders University. Vaxine research director Professor Nikolai Petrovsky said if those given the jab developed the correct antibodies, the clinical trials could then be expanded to include thousands of Australian volunteers in just a few weeks. If COVAX-19 is successful in preventing COVID-19 infection and is granted all the required approvals, it could be made available worldwide within the next six months.
Thousands of Australians have had their applications for JobKeeper payments rejected by the Australian Taxation Office due to ineligibility or fraud. Last month the ATO issued a stern warning that those caught deliberately trying to flout the system could be hit with financial penalties, prosecution or even jail time. The ATO had knocked back 6500 applications since the scheme was launched in March and had 3000 staff reviewing JobKeeper bids on top of other COVID-19-related stimulus packages. So far the Government’s $70 billion JobKeeper scheme, which offers laid-off Aussies $1500 a fortnight in wage relief, has been accessed by more than 3.3 million people from close to 900,000 businesses.
The share prices of Kogan.com Limited (ASX:KGN), Afterpay Limited (ASX:APT) and Xero Limited (ASX:XRO) surged on ASX and recorded fresh highs during the day. However, these stocks were noted close to their 52-weeks high price at AEST 12:21 PM. KGN shares quoted at A$15.810. APT shares quoted at A$67.475. XRO shares are trading at A$90.940. Also, the S&P/ASX 200 Information Technology Sector indicated a slight gain of 0.05% by AEST 12:23 PM.
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