According to the latest update made by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), the hunt for a COVID-19 cure can potentially be over not long from now since the first human clinical trials for an experimental vaccine for the deadly virus started just this Monday.
For now, however, the goal of the human trials is to find out whether the vaccine is indeed safe for human use and has no discernible and dangerous side effects. If it is, a later study will then be made to find out just how well it works, which will ultimately determine if it will get the green light for mass development and production.
According to a recent statement by the institute’s director, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the trial was “launched in a record speed.”
Per experts, this rapid development for a new vaccine is surely unprecedented, made possible most likely because of the previous knowledge that we gained about the last time viruses of a similar caliber (SARS and MERS) caused an outbreak, although those ones wasn’t as big as this one in terms of people affected and killed.
Nevertheless, people are advised that even with the rapid progress that the anti-virus is making, no one should be expecting it this year because it will not be available for at least a year from now.
“Finding a safe and effective vaccine to prevent infection with SARS-CoV-2 is an urgent public health priority. This Phase 1 study, launched in record speed, is an important first step toward achieving that goal,” Dr. Fauci said.
Currently being conducted at Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute located in Seattle, the tests are reportedly using a vaccine that was initially developed by Moderna Inc.
Per releases, Moderna reportedly uses genetic materials, such as messenger RNA, to develop their vaccines. Furthermore, the company also has nine other vaccines that are at different stages of development, which includes potential vaccines for other types of respiratory diseases. However, no vaccine with this type of technology has been released yet into the market.
Moving forward, researchers are hoping the vaccine will prove effective.
The Trump administration marked COVID-19 tests as an essential health benefit, which allows Medicaid and Medicare plans to cover the cost of the screening. Pixabay