There are still a lot of unknowns about the new virus that appears to be joining the ranks with the seasonal flu and cold. The coronavirus has already devastated lands and people with its quick infection rate.
The thought of a vaccine was only an afterthought until companies started doing the needed research to see have the virus reacts against certain types of drugs. There are still no companies that are claiming it has proof of a vaccine. But there is one vaccine developer that is producing a said vaccine without really knowing it works or not.
The vaccine was developed by the University of Oxford. There is no proof as to whether or not it works. But the Serum Institute of India is mass-producing doses of the hopeful serum with the goal of producing more.
The idea of the company is to have a ton of doses on hand once the trials are completed later in the year. If all goes well, they hope that it would speed up the distribution of the drug around the world.
The group from Oxford that is doing the testing hopes to finish up the trials in humans soon. Their goal is to use around 1,100 people in the trial. They need to see how it will react in the people before approving the release of the stored-up drug.
The Serum Institute produces billions of vaccines every year. They hope that it will help in the effort to beat the virus before it is too late for some people that are at risk.
The study group said that “We may get enough data in a couple of months to see if the vaccine works, but if transmission levels drop, this could take up to six months.” Strangely, they hope that there are still infections happening as the trial continues.
The Serum Institute also has finances on the mind. They do want to help people, but if they have the mass numbers of doses on hand when the time comes to release them, people will buy them from them simply because they have the doses ready to go.
The head of the institute stated that “We are not waiting for the trials to get over in September in the UK, and then start production here. The decision — at our own risk and cost — has been solely taken to get a jump-start on manufacturing, to have enough doses available, if the clinical trials prove successful.” It is a major risk, but no one gets ahead of the other without taking that risk.
He went on to say that We aim to manufacture 4 to 5 million doses per month for the first six months, following which, we might scale up to 10 million doses per month, based on the success of trials. We are looking to build it up to 20-40 million doses by September-October.”
They are treating this as if it will be around next winter. Even Dr. Fauci thought that the virus could go seasonal just like all the other strains of the coronavirus. Sarah Gilbert, who is working with the Oxford group believes that it will work.
She stated that “I think there’s a high chance that it will work based on other things that we have done with this type of vaccine.” There is at least some track record with the vaccine that is causing her to be optimistic about its success.
But the race continues to be the first to prove that they have the first vaccine. They will go down in the history books as the company that saved a world. The institute’s leader also stated that “We don’t want to make money from and commercialize something beyond a sustainable level in such a public-health epidemic.” But that is still going to be a side effect of making the vaccines.
Right now, there are about 80 companies in the race to save the world. The Oxford group was one of the first to start and now they are seeing some good results that are being reported. Time will tell if there is going to be a vaccine for a virus that has kept so many people around the world at home.