When will the Healthcare Sector have a Cure for COVID-19?
The novel Coronavirus which emerged less than 4 months ago has now spread to over 209 countries and territories and has whole cities in total lockdown!
The Covid-19 Vaccine cure – When Will It Be Ready For The Healthcare Sector?
The virus has wreaked havoc, globally, infecting over 1.5 million people with the death toll at 88,000 and counting! However, a total of 330,000 people have recovered from the virus. Which brings us to the questions; (figures are as per statistics at the time of writing this article 1 April 2020)
Is there no vaccine to fight the Covid-19 virus?
Who is working on a vaccine?
While a vaccine is not currently available at the moment, the best brains in the medical world and 30 known companies are working round the clock to find a cure in the form of a vaccine that can be rolled out to quite literally, save the world.
Ram Tumuluri – “With the pandemic set in to wipe out the best part of this year and economies as we know them, we’re all eagerly waiting for the positive news that there is a light at the end of this dark tunnel.
In this article, our team takes a look at a list of some of the companies who are currently thought to be making food progress toward finding a vaccine to fight the global pandemic.”
When will Covid-19 (Coronavirus) Vaccine cure be ready?
Companies Producing Nucleotide-Based Vaccines
This company, based in Boston, specialises in personalised cancer vaccines and is known to respond to public health hazards, which includes the Zika outbreak in 2015.
Moderna, together with scientists of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease produced a RNA based vaccine against the SARS CoV 2 Spike Protein.
Bringing a silver lining to the dark cloud looming over the world, on February 24th, Moderna shipped quantities of its candidate, mRNA-1273 to the NIAID Vaccine Research Centre. There a phase I safety trial was set to begin in early April.
CureVac, another Boston based bio-tech, is relying on synthetically made mRNA to create the Coronavirus proteins, thus causing immune cells to form an anti-body against the bacteria.
CureVac too was awarded a grant by CEPI to use its technology to create a vaccine against the SARS-CoV-2. And the company representatives say they are now diligently working on a vaccine for Covid-19.
Inovio, a Pennsylvania based firm, differs from the others in the sense it uses DNA instead of RNA to manufacture medication. CEPI is funding the bio-tech to produce a vaccine against Covid-19.
In January pre-clinical testing of its candidate named INO-4800 commenced. Over 3,000 doses of this vaccine have been dispatched for testing on patients in China, South Korea and the USA, towards the end of April.
Applied DNA Sciences/Takis Biotech
Applied DNA is a New York based firm, which together with Takis Biotech based in Rome Italy, announced its plans to produce a DNA based vaccine candidate against the Covid-19 virus.
Four alternatives of its candidate will be made available for testing on mice by April.
This India based pharmaceutical company made an announcement in February that it had commenced with two methods for creating a candidate vaccine against the Covid-19 virus.
The first, follows the path of Inovio and Applied DNA to create a ring of Coronavirus proteins within the body.
The second approach is to genetically manipulate a weakened recombinant measles virus, in hopes it will generate Covid-19 antibodies. A schedule for human testing is yet to be announced.
Stermina Therapeutics based at the Shanghai East Hospital at the Tongji University, is working on a mRNA vaccine. The CEO of the company made an announcement, in January, to Chinese media that they were proceeding to manufacture the vaccine, with hopes to test the candidate on humans by March.
Imperial College London
Imperial College London, has a team of scientists testing their DNA based vaccine on lab mice. The British scientists are on the lookout for funding to further extend their testing to humans, hopefully, by the end of the year.
Companies Producing Protein-Based Vaccines
GSK has partnered with the Chinese Clover Biopharmaceuticals to come up with a Covid-19 vaccine. The latter will produce viral protein while GSK will contribute adjuvants, which are proprietary effectiveness boosting compounds. Test times are yet to be confirmed.
Novavax became part of the competition when it started developing vaccines for SARS and MERS. And in January the company announced a production of several candidate vaccines; developed from recombinant protein nanoparticles, obtained via the SARS CoV 2 spike protein. Human testing is scheduled for spring 2020.
Altimmune is popular for its nasal spray flu vaccine; and continuing on this line they are engineering a vaccine that needs to be sprayed into the nose and not injected. The company announced in February that it had completed developing a vaccine for Covid-19 and was looking at animal testing and later trials on humans.
This company is the first to announce an oral vaccine against the Covid-19 vaccine. Candidates were to be generated based on the available genome of SARS CoV 2, although a timeline is yet to be announced.
Expres2ion is a Denmark based firm which together with a team of leading European scientists is intent on creating a vaccine for Covid-19. Viral antigens are produced with the cells of fruit flies.
Other biotech firms working tirelessly to develop a protein based vaccine against Covid-19 include
- Generex Biotechnology – The Florida based company is contracted by 4 Chinese companies to make use of the firms patented immune activating technology
- Vaxil Bio – An Israeli immunotherapy firm that’s best known for its research on cancer announced the discovery of proteins that could help create a Covid-19 vaccine
- iBio – with a Chinese partner, iBio plans to extend its research using modified links from the tobacco plant to develop viral proteins to create vaccines.
- Baylor College Of Medicine/New York Blood Centre
- University Of Queensland
- University Of Oxford/Advent Srl
Companies Developing Viral Vector Based Vaccines Against Covid-19
Since 2004 Sanofi, together with BARDA has been on a pandemic alert, which includes SARS as well. Using the firm’s incumbent DNA podium to switch parts of the Coronavirus RNA with genetic substances of a less harmful bacteria. Human testing may commence in 2021.
Johnson & Johnson
The company expanded its ties with BARDA to develop an Ebola vaccine in hopes of creating a Covid-19 vaccine. Timelines for developing the vaccine are not announced.
Atlanta based Geovax has teamed up with BravoVax from Wuhan China to develop a Covid-19 vaccine. The method is to use a pox virus, which has been modified to extract viral proteins from SARS CoV 2.
The Chinese firm is in the process of creating a viral vector centred vaccine against Covid-19.
Greffex is a Houston based genetics engineering firm which made a claim it had completed developing a Covid-19 vaccine. Timelines are yet to be announced.
The Only Company Trying Weaken A Live SARS CoV 2 Virus To Find An Antigen For Covid-19
Codagenix is a biotech firm based in New York. The company has collaborated with Serum Institute of India to create, together, a live but tempered vaccine against Covid-19.
Codagenix uses a method known as ‘deoptimization’ which is to create a milder version of the virus, which although able to replicate itself, is not a lethal version of the original.
Animal testing of the vaccine candidate is scheduled for spring 2020, with human testing planned for summer 2020.