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US researchers are pushing for a “universal” COVID vaccine in the emergence of new variants




Universal scientific quest coronavirus Vaccines are because the top three researchers in the United States, including Dr. Anthony Fauci, have shown a way to develop new vaccines to tackle a variety of illnesses, including COVID-19, some common colds, and future viruses. It was boosted.

Fauci and two colleagues in the New England Journal of Medicine said the virus that causes COVID is unlikely to be eliminated, and current vaccines are too restrictive to prevent the emergence of new variants. I am.

Other coronaviruses are also likely to spill out of animals and pose a threat to future pandemics, they write.

To overcome these problems, the authors should “fully commit” the world of research to the development of a “second generation” of coronavirus vaccines that provide broad protection across the genetic spectrum of coronavirus. Claims to be.

They are proposing to form an international effort to collect animal coronavirus samples around the world and develop ethical challenge tests for coronavirus.

Over the last 20 years, there have been four deadly coronavirus outbreaks worldwide. This includes two SARS attacks in the early 2000s, the emergence of MERS in 2012, and COVID-19, which now kills more than 5 million people worldwide.

The commentary does not provide a quick solution to the pandemic.

No quick fix

However, Fauci’s support for a universal vaccine approach can serve as a clear call and blueprint for scientists.

“It’s a good roadmap,” said Pablo Penaloza-MacMaster, a viral immunologist and assistant professor at Northwestern University.

“It creates some scientific clarity: what are the specific hurdles for developing a universal vaccine?”

Researchers have been chasing so-called universal vaccines for years.

Scientists want to develop new vaccines that can combat a variety of illnesses, including COVID, some common colds, and future viruses.
Scientists want to develop new vaccines that can combat a variety of illnesses, including COVID, some common colds, and future viruses. credit: Paul Billis/ /Getty Images

Scientists have been Universal vaccine test against influenza For over 10 years, with the aim of providing long-term protection that does not require annual influenza vaccination.

First human clinical trial of universal influenza vaccine Started in 2019Vaccines are not yet on the market.

The new paper is by Fauci Universal vaccine For coronavirus.

However, the emergence of highly mutated variants such as Omicron, which can compromise the level of protection provided by available vaccines, makes the pursuit of long-term solutions even more urgent.

high priority

America In September, the National Institutes of Health announced that it had invested more than $ 36 million. The university’s efforts towards a vaccine that has the potential to neutralize many coronaviruses.

“We certainly put it first,” Fauci said. I told the Washington Post this month..

“Before we really get a full coverage of this, there is a fundamental scientific challenge.

“There is no clear path to the product, all you need to do is put more resources into the product.”

Researchers at the African Institute of Health in Durban, South Africa are working on the Covidomicron variant on Wednesday.
Researchers at the African Institute of Health in Durban, South Africa are working on the Covidomicron variant on Wednesday. credit: AP

To develop a universal vaccine, Dr. Fauci, Dr. David Morens, and Dr. Jeffery Taubenberger collaborated to collect samples from animals such as bats, palm civets, and raccoon dogs, which are frequent hosts or reservoirs of coronavirus. We propose to create an initiative for. You may jump to a person.

Sequencing the genomes of such viruses may help researchers identify new threats and discover commonalities between coronaviruses that new vaccines may target.

The author (all high-ranking physicians at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)) has also conducted further research on other coronaviruses suspected of causing a pandemic before becoming a permanent equipment that causes the common cold. Suggests.

Scientists also find cell targets common to many coronaviruses that vaccines may aid in attack, identify vaccine candidates that promote a long-term immune response, and find the best way to test them in animals. The paper states that it needs to be found.

Human research

The author argues that it is also important to test universal vaccines in human challenge studies.

This type of research can accelerate vaccine development, but it is ethically complex because it involves intentionally infecting people to test the vaccine.

Many scientists consider COVID’s human challenge studies to be unethical because they are so serious that it may be possible to design responsible studies for viruses that cause colds and other agents. Maybe.

Researchers Conducting challenge research in influenza test..

The development of a universal coronavirus vaccine “seems to be feasible,” said Penaloza-MacMaster.

His own research has shown that existing vaccines can protect mice from coronaviruses that were not the original target.

However, the achievement of a universal coronavirus vaccine can take years, Penalosa-Macmaster said.

He also said that multiple vaccines may be needed to cover different families of coronaviruses. This is because mice received more protection against more genetically similar viruses.

Ambitious suggestions

The proposal in this paper is ambitious.

Collecting virus samples from bat caves, animal markets, and people interacting with these creatures is “a lot of work” and powerful to prevent the virus from accidentally infecting humans. Bio-safety measures are required.

“There are people in the cave with bats. No spillover is needed,” said Penaloza-MacMaster.

He said at least half a dozen research groups have already evaluated universal vaccine candidates and are looking for the best part of the coronavirus to target.

The current coronavirus vaccines manufactured by Moderna, Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson target the peplomer protein that Penaloza-MacMaster calls the virus’s “heel”, which can also mutate and evolve. It’s a high part.

He said the Penaloza-MacMaster lab is working on a vaccine that targets proteins “in the viscera of the virus.”

Dr. Anthony Fauci, an infectious disease expert in the United States.
Dr. Anthony Fauci. credit: AP

Other laboratories are evaluating nanoparticle vaccines featuring multiple peplomers from different viruses.

Penaloza-MacMaster says, “It’s like throwing a kitchen sink” so that the immune system can recognize it.

He added that Fauci hopes to move forward with support for universal vaccines and further promote government support.

“It’s good to put eggs in different baskets in the face of an imminent pandemic,” he said.

“Not all approaches work.”





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