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COVID Vaccines from Novavax and Medicago May Launch Soon : Shots



An experimental bottle of Novavax coronavirus vaccine is ready for use in a 2020 study in London. Novavax’s proposed vaccine contains a non-infectious virus — a blocking protein — along with a substance called adjuvant that helps the body create an immune response. strong .

Alastair Grant/AP


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Alastair Grant/AP


An experimental bottle of Novavax coronavirus vaccine is ready for use in a 2020 study in London. Novavax’s proposed vaccine contains a non-infectious virus — a blocking protein — along with a substance called adjuvant that helps the body create an immune response. strong .

Alastair Grant/AP

Vaccines against COVID-19 New types will be available this summer.

It’s something called a protein digesting vaccine. This vaccine works quite differently than the current vaccine crop that is licensed for use in the United States. But it uses a well-understood technology and doesn’t require special refrigeration.

in general Vaccines work by showing people’s immune systems that they look like viruses, but they really don’t. It is considered a warning in advance. If the real virus appears The immune system is ready to try to drive it away.

In the case of the coronavirus, “something” is one of the proteins in the virus — the spike protein.

Vaccines produced by Johnson & Johnson, Moderna and Pfizer contain genetic instructions for the spike protein. And it depends on the cells in our body to make proteins on their own.

The first COVID-19 subunit protein vaccine to be released will likely come from biotech company Novavax, in contrast to the three vaccines that are already licensed in the United States. This vaccine contains the spike protein itself. No need to build at all along with a booster vaccine that boosts the immune response to make vaccines better prevent

Protein-digesting vaccines made this way have been around for a while. There are vaccines on the market for hepatitis B and pertussis that use this technology.

A large-scale test of the efficacy of the Novavax COVID-19 vaccine was conducted on tens of thousands of volunteers in The United States and Mexico are ending, Dr. Gregory Glenn, President of Research and Development at Novavax, addressed the audience at a recent webinar hosted by The International Society for Vaccines said, “We expect to apply for permits in the UK, US and Europe in the third quarter.”

turn plants into factories

To create viral proteins, Novavax uses giant vats of cells grown in the lab. But there is another way to make proteins: bring plants in the greenhouse to make them.

That’s the approach taken by Canadian biotechnology company Medicago.

The plant used is related to the tobacco plant. and have been modified to have genetic instructions to make viral proteins.

Plants do something very valuable — they create a fatty shell that surrounds a bunch of viral proteins. with protruding proteins

“Plants assemble proteins in shapes and forms that look like viruses,” said Nathalie Landry, Medicago’s executive vice president for science and medicine. looks like a virus, but cannot cause any disease, but when [it’s] Vaccination helps the body to respond well to the immune system.

Early studies suggest that the vaccine for Medicago candidates does, and the company is confident enough in those findings that it has already begun large-scale studies in people that may involve 30,000 volunteers in 11 countries.

Landry admits that Medicago COVID-19 vaccine development is lagging behind others

“We’re late, but we’re coming,” she said.

Another upcoming backcomer is pharmaceutical giant Sanofi. Its protein-digesting vaccine against coronavirus is also grown in cells in the lab.

late last year The company is preparing to conduct a large-scale study on the efficacy of vaccines. When the results of the first study in a small group of people It has been shown to do not seem to induce a protective immune response.

Dr. Paul Goepfert from the University of Alabama in Birmingham said: “Especially in the elderly in that study It doesn’t immunize as it should.” He said the problem turned out to be incorrect calculations of the doses of vaccines delivered.

“So instead of giving 10 micrograms of the drug, they gave one microgram,” Goepfert said.

Sanofi fixed that problem and repeated the early study with good results. The company is currently recruiting volunteers for a large performance trial.

Goepfert said it would be nice if these vaccines were made available to consumers. But that doesn’t solve the problem of getting people to get vaccinated.

why? “Because the vaccines we have now are working more than expected,” he said, “and now I’m in a state of frustration at how slowly our vaccines are absorbed.”

Goepfert lives in Alabama. according to the latest figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Only Mississippi has a lower per capita vaccination rate.


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