Second wave vaccines
Islam News – As terrifying outbreaks erupt around the world, governments are scrambling to tap into the global supply of vaccines. But with so few doses to go around, many countries, particularly those in the developing world, are looking toward an upcoming “second wave” of vaccines.
Novavax, based in Maryland, is expected to apply for U.S. authorization in the next few weeks. The Indian pharmaceutical company Biological E is testing a vaccine that was developed by researchers in Texas. And researchers in Brazil, Mexico, Thailand and Vietnam are starting trials for a Covid-19 shot that can be mass-produced in chicken eggs.
My colleague Carl Zimmer, who covers science for The Times, told me that experts are particularly curious about an RNA vaccine from a small German company called CureVac, which entered the RNA vaccine business before BioNTech and Moderna. CureVac could announce results from its late-stage vaccine trial as early as next week.
“Moderna and Pfizer-Biotech demonstrated that RNA vaccines can work incredibly well,” Carl said. “They are about as good as a vaccine can be, in terms of protection, as far as we can tell right now. So it’s possible that CureVac might also be really effective, too.”
To be sure, the trial results are not in yet. “And CureVac does have some differences in how it creates its RNA,” Carl said. “So we’ll have to see if those differences translate into how well the vaccine performs.”
But if it works, CureVac’s shot would have an important advantage over the other RNA vaccines: While Pfizer and Moderna must be kept in a deep freezer, CureVac’s vaccine remains stable in a refrigerator and can sit for 24 hours at room temperature before it is used, properties that may make it easier to deliver to hard-hit places around the world.
If successful, Carl said CureVac could be ready to deliver 1 billion doses by next year. But there’s still a huge demand for the raw materials needed to create RNA vaccines, so even if the results are good, Carl said, “it will definitely still be a scramble.”
Source: The New York Times