RDIF, The Gamaleya National Center, AstraZeneca and R-Pharm sign an agreement to cooperate on COVID-19 vaccine development

Press release, 21.12.2020

Moscow, December 21, 2020 – The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF, Russia’s sovereign wealth fund), The Gamaleya National Center, AstraZeneca and R-Pharm have signed an agreement aimed at the development and implementation of a clinical research program to assess the immunogenicity and safety of the combined use of one of the components of the Sputnik V vaccine developed by the Gamaleya Center, and one of the components of the AZD1222 vaccine, developed by AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford.

The agreement was announced on a video-conference with Vladimir Putin, the President of Russia.

The parties have also agreed to develop scientific and business relations and explore the possibilities for joint use of the Sputnik V vaccine and the AZD1222 vaccine in order to create more effective and long-term immunization against potential new coronavirus infections.

Clinical trials of the combination of AZD1222 vaccine with Sputnik V’s human adenoviral vector type Ad26 will begin soon. R-Pharm will be among the organizations funding the trial.

Sputnik V is among the world’s most effective and safe vaccines due to its unique technology combining two different human adenoviral vectors providing for a stronger and longer-term immune response compared to vaccines using the same component for both inoculations..

The regimen with two different adenoviral vectors for a prime and a boost immunization is a unique and ground-breaking discovery of the Gamaleya Center scientists. It helps to completely avoid immunity to the first vector, which is formed after the first inoculation, and thus to raise efficacy and create long-term immunity. This regimen is one of the reasons why the vaccine shows efficacy of over 90%, with 100% efficacy in severe cases. Among the leading COVID-19 vaccines only Sputnik V is using the two-vector technology.


Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) is Russia's sovereign wealth fund established in 2011 to make equity co-investments, primarily in Russia, alongside reputable international financial and strategic investors. RDIF acts as a catalyst for direct investment in the Russian economy. RDIF’s management company is based in Moscow. Currently, RDIF has experience of the successful joint implementation of more than 80 projects with foreign partners totaling more than RUB1.9 tn and covering 95% of the regions of the Russian Federation. RDIF portfolio companies employ more than 800,000 people and generate revenues which equate to more than 6% of Russia’s GDP. RDIF has established joint strategic partnerships with leading international co-investors from more than 18 countries that total more than $40 bn. Further information can be found at rdif.ru

For additional information contact:

Arseniy Palagin                                       Andrew Leach / Maria Shiryaevskaya
Russian Direct Investment Fund                          Hudson Sandler
Press Secretary                                                Tel: +44 (0) 20 7796 4133 
Tel: +7 495 644 34 14, ext. 2395
Mobile: +7 916 110 31 41
E-mail: arseniy.palagin@rdif.ru