Dozens of research teams around the world are working to develop a vaccine for SARS-Cov-2, the virus that causes covid-19 , using the new technologies with a mix of established techniques. US, China and Europe have invested the most for the vaccine, with billions of dollars pouring in around the world to make a product that will help to fight against the virus. As the corona virus continues to accelerate unabated, here’s what it will take to bring a vaccine to the masses and how each of the three biggest players are faring in their quest to make it happen as quickly as possible. Scientists are trying their best to deliver a vaccine before 2021. A vaccine must go through a multiple stages before being use. Due to the race to stop corona virus, the initial research and development stages of clinical trials and pre-clinical trials that takes two years or more to complete , are combined or skipped altogether to speed up the process. There are currently 29 vaccines being tested in multiple human trials, running simultaneously round the world. Among these, six vaccines are being tested in seven Phase 3 trials. Most of the candidates in human trials have either American, European or Chinese financial backing and some experts believe it will be regulators in one of those places that will be the first to approve a safe and effective vaccine. American biotechnology firm Moderna was the first in the world to kick off human trials on March 16 , just two months after the genetic sequences for SARS-Cov-2 were identified.
To reach this late stage of trials just six months after the discovery is remarkably fast, it would normally take six years , according to Adrian Hill, director of the Jenner Institute of Oxford University. China has already done an experimental vaccine for use by its military in late June. Some countries are pushing forward vaccine before their efficiency has been proven in phase 3 trials. Dr. Anthony Fauci , the Director of the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases ,says that ” I hope that the Russian have actually, definitely proven that the vaccine is safe and effective. I seriously doubt that they have done it”. When Americans hear announcements from countries like Russia and China about vaccine development, Fauci said that they should remember that the US has very different standards in place. AstraZeneca has said that it reached agreements including US and UK and other organizations to produce at least 2 billion doses of vaccine, with the first deliveries starting as early in September. The Biochemical Advanced Research and Development Authority, a branch of US Department of Health and Human Services, is injecting billions of dollars into companies to ramp up vaccine development and manufacturing, including AstraZeneca. It has also inked deals for doses with Novavax, Pfizer-BioNTech, Johnson & Johnson, Moderna and Sanofi. US food and drug administration has said that a coronavirus vaccine would have to protect at least 50% of vaccinated people to be considered effective . Its though that level of efficacy can help stop transmission, especially in combination with other treatments and prevention measures.
The US has already allocated more than $1.5 billion for domestic manufacturing and distribution in order to ensure a vaccine can be produced to scale.
The EU has earmarked about $3.5 billion for vaccine research, development and procurement, about one-third of the $10.8 billion in funds allocated by the US to the same efforts.