Every day, the world painfully grapples with the sickness that the coronavirus disease globally trending as COVID19 has bestowed on humanity.
It’s an occurrence that has got the world wailing and fearful of what awaits them in the future breeds a rare taste of pain and naivety. It’s tough for many.
The uncertainty of this disease has left many people and government worried as it has no cure or vaccine. This has left over 2.5m people being victimised.
According to worldmeters, as of 22nd April 2020, over 2.5m cases had been registered globally with 1, 77, 234 deaths and 688, 430 recoveries.
Africa and Africa has not been spared by the killer virus. The continent is bleeding and experts project that it will only get worse.
Africa with its poor health service infrastructure and policies is expected to be the next epicentre by World Health Organisation (WHO), sadly.
Africa is struggling with over 25,236 cases that have resulted in 1, 193 death despite 6, 739 recoveries. The diseases scourge sours in Africa each day.
Uganda has reported 56 cases, no death and 28 recoveries as of 22nd April 2020, good stats as compared to what is happening in other African countries.
But amidst this scavenger trotting of the virus around the world, two global firms, Sanofi, a global biopharmaceutical company, and GSK, a science-led global healthcare company, are teaming up to offer hope for a vaccine.
The two firms last week issued a joint statement announcing their effort to alienate the virus which has left global economies and products like oil crumbling, destitute and worthless.
The two signed ‘a letter of intent to develop an adjuvanted vaccine for COVID-19, using innovative technology’ to help address the ongoing pandemic.
According to the report, Sanofi will contribute its S-protein COVID-19 antigen, which is based on recombinant DNA technology. This technology has produced an exact genetic match to proteins found on the surface of the virus.
The DNA sequence encoding this antigen has been combined into the DNA of the baculovirus expression platform, the basis of Sanofi’s licensed recombinant influenza product in the US.
In this deal GSK will contribute its proven pandemic adjuvant technology. The use of an adjuvant can be of particular importance in a pandemic situation since it may reduce the amount of vaccine protein required per dose, allowing more vaccine doses to be produced and therefore contributing to protecting more people.
“As the world faces this unprecedented global health crisis, it is clear that no one company can go it alone,” says Paul Hudson, Chief Executive Officer, Sanofi.
“That is why Sanofi is continuing to complement its expertise and resources with our peers, such as GSK, with the goal to create and supply sufficient quantities of vaccines that will help stop this virus.”
“This collaboration brings together two of the world’s largest vaccines companies,” says Emma Walmsley, Chief Executive Officer, GSK.
“By combining our scientific expertise, technologies and capabilities, we believe that we can help accelerate the global effort to develop a vaccine to protect as many people as possible from COVID-19.”
The combination of a protein-based antigen together with an adjuvant is well-established and used in a number of vaccines available today. An adjuvant is added to some vaccines to enhance the immune response and has been shown to create a stronger and longer-lasting immunity against infections than the vaccine alone. It can also improve the likelihood of delivering an effective vaccine that can be manufactured at scale.
The companies plan to initiate phase I clinical trials in the second half of 2020 and, if successful, subject to regulatory considerations, aim to complete the development required for availability by the second half of 2021.
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