A Coronavirus vaccine is critical to stop the spread of this new virus. Ofer Levy, a physician-scientist at Boston Children’s Hospital, is worried whatever vaccine is created won’t work on seniors. Seniors are one of the most vulnerable to this disease. Levy is trying to develop a vaccine that will work for everyone.
Creating a Coronavirus Vaccine that Works for Everyone
“Whatever we develop, we’ve got to make sure it works in the elderly. Otherwise, we don’t have our eye on the ball. And right now, the way vaccines are developed, the eye isn’t on the ball.”– Ofer Levy
They have hundreds of samples of cells donated by older patients treated at the nearby Brigham and Women’s Hospital before the outbreak.
They want to add an adjuvant, which is a substance that boosts the vaccine’s effectiveness at the lowest dosage.
Having these samples let the team test vaccine-adjuvant combinations directly on cells from older people. Using cells makes the whole process faster and allows them to try many different combinations.
Most vaccine research starts with cells from young mice. Though once Levy and his team find the correct combinations, they will move onto mice, which is a needed step to get federal approval.
It could take more than a year to get a vaccine ready and approved.
There at least 40 other companies around the world working on their own Coronavirus vaccines.
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