Are you wondering about the possibilities of a vaccine for the COVID-19 pandemic? Here are few SARS-CoV-2 vaccine updates from around the world.
People dying, world under lockdown and #socialdistance trending on Twitter suddenly seems strange. It almost feels like a sci-fi movie isn’t it? The reason behind these strange events is a virus called SARS-CoV-2 which is the reason behind the current COVID-19 pandemic.
The SARS-CoV-2 originated from a family of larger viruses known as the coronaviruses. These viruses spend a large time with animals. This is third virus that has crossed over from them. Other two viruses are SARS-CoV-1 and MERS.
You might all remember the SARS outbreak in China which began in 2002. This virus outbreak caused by SARS CoV-1, brother to SARS-CoV-2, still has no vaccine, despite numerous attempts by scores of organisations. The same attempts and efforts are being put into finding a vaccine for Covid 19 by numerous scientists and government funded organisations all over.
The Covid 19 Infections Worldwide
As of now there are over 18,50,220 confirmed cases, 4,30,455 recovered cases and 1,14,215 deaths across the globe. Looking at the stats, COVID-19 has spread rapidly. Finding its origin in China, it has affected 90% of the countries in the world. USA and Spain are among the worst hit countries with death toll in the former country reaching over 20,000.
WHO considers the global risk assessment level of the virus as “very high” because of how aggressively it has spread around the globe. If we don’t have a vaccine soon enough, we know the numbers are surely going to rise.
Where are We Now in Terms of the Covid 19 Vaccine and What to Expect?
The world of Science is scrambling for a COVID-19 vaccine. WHO has listed two vaccines currently under clinical evaluation and another 60 under pre-clinical trials. Numerous companies including government funded organisations are trying to corner in on a vaccine that can put an end to this deadly virus.
Scientists say it is hard to find a vaccine for the novel coronavirus and it might take as long as 18 months to create a successful one.
Is this fact true? Why is the vaccine for SARS-CoV-2, which can be killed with just a handwash or a hand sanitiser, taking so long? According to Dr. Hakim Djaballah, a renowned virologist and ex CEO at Pasteur Institute Korea, it is hard to understand the virus, because it doesn’t follow the same rules as the other viruses. Plus, it not only seems to affect the lungs but the heart and liver as well.
What are the Current Vaccine Updates?
Even though numerous countries are placed under lockdown and are following strict measures to curb the spread, experts predict a new wave of outbreak without a vaccine. In late March, Dr. Mike Ryan, Executive Director of the WHO’s Health Emergencies Programme said that a vaccine is ‘’at least a year away’’.
However, according to Guardian, a team from the University of Oxford who is developing a COVID-19 vaccine is close to finding one. Sarah Gilbert, who heads the team stated that the best case scenario for their vaccine candidate is by the autumn of 2020. She also added that, “best-case timeframes are highly ambitious and subject to change.’’
Health Organizations on the Covid 19 Vaccine
The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (Cepi), a global organisation who works for creating vaccines against infectious diseases, put up a pandemic paradigm. This pandemic paradigm involves “develop[ing] reserves of investigational vaccines for each pathogen after such vaccines have completed phase 2a trials, expecting that they will undergo clinical trials during future outbreaks.’’ This is a risky step both in terms of safety and financial resources. But, Cepi doesn’t offer any relief because they haven’t attached a timeline to the paradigm.
There are other institutions that have vaccine candidates under testing. US National Institute of Health (NIH) and the Massachusetts-based biotechnology company Moderna Inc. developed a vaccine codenamed mRNA-1273 and began testing on humans. In early April another US-based company, Inovio Pharmaceuticals, started testing a similar vaccine, code-named INO-4800.
According to the WHO, a vaccine created by CanSino Biological Inc and the Beijing Institute of Biotechnology in China is also in the clinical testing phase.
Considering that SARS-CoV-1 has no vaccine yet, SARS -CoV-2 vaccine is definitely going to take some time. However, there are several steps you can follow to be safe from the coronavirus.
Preventive Measures to be Taken:
Try to stay indoors as much as possible. Take the social distancing applied by governments seriously. It will ensure that you don’t contract the virus. You can always keep yourself occupied by exercising or doing yoga. You can buy the Non-Slip Yoga Mat for quite a discounted price here.
You can also keep yourself busy by doing some DIY activities, binging on some nice movies, cooking and much more.
Wear Masks and Gloves
Always wear masks if you are stepping out. This will prevent the virus from entering your nostrils or mouth. N95 masks are the best masks for COVID-19. Check out the You can also check out the kn95 Protective Mask on Chinavasion.
Besides, gloves prevent you from touching infected surfaces like money or a metal with you bare hands. It is always recommended to wear gloves if you are stepping outside your home to avoid coming in direct contact with infected surfaces or persons. Buy the anti bacterial gloves at Chinavasion for extra protection.
Good Hygiene Practices
Always make sure you maintain personal hygiene. In case you step out and touch something or someone, apply sanitiser on your hands. Also, your sanitiser should have an alcoholic content of 70% to successfully eliminate the virus. Make sure that you are not touching your face before using the sanitiser.
Additionally, use a handwash after you come home to ensure the virus is completely killed. You can also use an Antibacterial disinfectant gel to kill all kinds of germs, bacteria, virus and fungi that lands on you hand.
Keep Checking Your Temperature
As a safety measure you can regularly check your temperature. If you or your family members have a mild fever you can immediately take a precaution. Keep a thermometer handy at home. If you are planning to buy one, have a look at the Forehead Ear Thermometer Digital Infrared Temporal Thermometer at Chinavasion.
Now that you know a vaccine is not going to be out in the near future, we need to do all that we can to protect ourselves from the virus.
Avoid going out and if you happen to, make sure to wear masks and gloves. Also remember to keep sanitising your hands after you touch surfaces.
Let’s hope that a vaccine is not far away but until then stay home, maintain good hygiene and stay safe.