"According to preliminary data, a fire occurred during a thunderstorm due to a lightning strike. Building materials used for partial repair of the roof … caught fire. The fire was localized within half an hour. None of the institute employees was injured. There was no damage to the premises. Work is being carried out as usual," the ministry said through its official channels.
The incident took place overnight in the southwest of the capital and did not damage anything in the building’s interior, the ministry clarified.
The Shemyakin and Ovchinnikov Biochemistry Research Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences is one of the leading centres in its field. The Russian coronavirus test kit was developed within its walls and it is part of a nationwide network researching vaccines against COVID-19.