For more than a year, the swift spread of a novel COVID-19 virus, has made its way around the globe. While there are non-pharmaceutical tools that are pivotal in slowing the spread, such as wearing face masks and practicing social distancing, vaccines appear to be the foundation of long-term defensive interventions in order to get our communities back to some semblance of normalcy again.
Every year, vaccines are responsible for saving millions of lives, according to the WHO (World Health Organization). In short, vaccines enable the body’s immune system to recognize and battle viruses. Once vaccinated, if certain bacterias infiltrate the body, then the immune system is equipped to kill the germs in an effort to prevent illness.
SARS-CoV-2 Vaccines in Development
The dire need for successful vaccines has propelled research developers to acutely focus on COVID-19, which led to an accelerated pipeline of preclinical candidates as well as the vaccine development itself.
As of April 2021, there have been at least seven COVID-19 vaccines distributed in countries across multiple platforms. Currently, more than 80 additional vaccine candi-dates are in development, and over 180 are in pre-clinical development.
Due to the astounding global response and the extraordinary quantity and pace of re-search to develop an effective vaccine, a vaccine tracker was created and is hosted by the Vaccine Centre. It is an interactive, user-friendly tool that is accessible online. Launched one year ago in April of 2020, the goal is to collect updated data on all COVID-19 vaccine contenders, from the beginning steps to final execution.
This transparent tool allows both the public as well as researchers the ability to stay ap-prised of the latest information, and is updated on a weekly basis. The insights include preclinical and clinical candidates.
Vaccine Key Metrics & Execution
The vaccine tracker includes important metrics of both trials that are actively underway, as well as those that are in pre-planning phases. Its database features a variety of de-tails such as the size and location of the study, randomization, and the recruitment standing of registered vaccine trials in humans for COVID-19. Once a week, a clinical trial database from the US National Institutes of Health, as well as the WHO landscape pinpoints newly registered and/or updated protocols.
In addition to the preclinical and clinical candidate vaccine tracking, there is also a fea-ture that captures data on storage requirement, forecasts for manufacturing the vaccine, and approval status by the FDA. For each projected vaccine, countries who plan on dis-tributing it along with their statistics are included in the tracker. As the vaccine develop-ment gets underway, the tracker outlines the roll-out stages and execution steps.
The expeditious progression in developing the COVID-19 vaccine is evidence of the commitment and ingenuity of research experts, as well as the general public’s trustwor-thiness who agreed to participate in clinical studies. There have been nearly 700,000 people from around the world who are actively in, or plan to be a part of these studies. In order for the trials’ assessments to have full efficacy and safety, there must be vitreous information throughout the entire process.
Consequences of continuing vaccine delivery for the COVID-19 virus will play an im-portant role in providing credibility and belief concerning vaccination now, and in the fu-ture. While proven vaccines will be a staple for protecting the public, people should con-tinue to wear face masks, social distance, and stay away from large crowds
for the indefinite future.
Stay tuned for an upcoming Auxo Medical blog post where we’ll discuss the cost of COVID-19 vaccinations.