The National Vaccine Institute (NVI), a Thai public autonomous authority that coordinates vaccine affairs with domestic and international stakeholders cooperated with Genexine, a clinical-stage biotechnology company in South Korea, for the development of GX-19, a DNA vaccine material for COVID-19, as well as clinical trials. The memorandum of understanding which was with NVI came after Genexine secured approval from the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety, a public health watchdog in South Korea, to go ahead with clinical trials. The first stage will involve 40 healthy volunteers and evaluate the safety and efficacy of antibody formation in 150 patients. Genexine has been involved in a state-commissioned research consortium that also groups the state-run Korea Advanced Institute of Science & Technology (KAIST), Pohang University of Science and Technology (POSTECH) and the International Vaccine Institute (IVI). The consortium started the first testing of a vaccine candidate on monkeys in March to check the safety of GX-19 and confirmed the generation of antibodies that can neutralize a novel coronavirus.