The first COVID-19 vaccine tested in the U.S. revved up immune systems of the patients just the way scientists had visualised. This latest development is reported a few hours ago. Now is the time to begin the large scale testing, says Dr. Anthony Fauci, the U.S. government’s top infectious disease expert.
The next phase of tests will start from 27 July 2020. A group of 30,000 people will be tested with the vaccine to find out if it really can be used large scale. The experimental vaccine was developed by Dr. Fauci’s colleagues at the National Institutes of Health and Moderna Inc. If the tests prove the shots are strong enough to counter the corona virus, then this would be treated as the first real breakthrough.
The trial tests started in mid-March and 45 people participated in the trials. These early volunteers developed what are called neutralizing antibodies in their bloodstream -- molecules key to blocking infection -- at levels comparable to those found in people who survived COVID-19, the research team reported in the New England Journal of Medicine. As hoped by the researchers, there is a strong immunity boost in the group (of 45).
Dr. Lisa Jackson of the Kaiser Permanente Washington Research Institute in Seattle, who led the study said: “This is an essential building block that is needed to move forward with the trials that could actually determine whether the vaccine does protect against infection.”
Two shots of vaccine are given with a mandatory gap of 30 days. There are no side effects as reported by the researchers. Only that as reported by the group of 45 (a few among them actually) flu like symptoms for a couple of days. But this is common with any vaccine. Remember the days when polio vaccine was given in childhood, we used to get fever for a couple of days?