Americans have a coronavirus vaccine patch. It is ready for testing

Maybe this is not the good news that we have all been waiting for, but it is definitely a step in the right direction. Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine have announced that their coronavirus vaccine has passed the initial laboratory tests and is ready for clinical testing.

Tests on mice show that the vaccine activates their immune system to make enough antibodies to deal with SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus. Test results have already received the first independent review, which gives them greater credibility.

A vaccine in the form of a patch

Pittsburgh scientists have decided to use a microneedle patch vaccine that simply sticks to the skin. The biggest advantage of this idea is that fragments of coronavirus protein are delivered under the skin, i.e. to the place where the immune system reacts most strongly. An average number of antibodies form after 2 weeks after vaccination.

As for the production process itself, the scientists certainly took into account the logistics associated with its rapid production and global transport. The protein fragments themselves, found in SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, and inducing the desired immune response are produced in laboratory cultured cells.

Professor Andrea Gambrotto assures that this process can be scaled up without much problem for a much larger production volume. In contrast, the microneedles, through which the proteins are delivered, are created from sugar (thanks to which they dissolve by sticking into the skin) and - which is very important - they do not require refrigeration during transport or storage.

Will the coronavirus vaccine work?

When creating the new vaccine, scientists from Pittsburgh used the experience acquired during previous epidemics caused by coronaviruses:

- We have gained experience with SARS-CoV epidemics in 2003 and MERS-CoV in 2014. Both viruses are closely related to SARS-CoV-2 and when it comes to acquiring organism immunity, contact with them proved to be crucial surface protein - explains Gambrotto.

This is a much more traditional approach than the mRNA-1273 vaccine , which contains a piece of virus RNA code reconstructed in the laboratory, responsible for producing proteins that allow it to enter lung cells. Which idea will turn out to be more effective - we will find out after we finish testing both vaccines.

The first tests on mice confirmed this theory. Researchers have already submitted an application to the US Federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to obtain approval for human clinical trials, which - if everything goes according to plan - will be carried out over the next few months.

It is not yet known how much the mass production of such a vaccine would cost. For sure, however, all countries will be interested in buying it.

Americans have a coronavirus vaccine patch. It is ready for testing


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