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The recent dramatic spike in cases due to rise of the has changed the meaning of „.“ Many experts are now talking about yearly COVID or variant-specific vaccines. But what if there were a universal coronavirus vaccine that protected against omicron and all new COVID-19 variants?
Several institutions — including the University of Wisconsin, Duke University and Brigham and pts terbaik sumatera Women’s Hospital in Boston — are researching , but the US Army is the first to demonstrate positive trial results.
The that its pan-coronavirus vaccine, the spike ferritin nanoparticle COVID-19 vaccine (aka SpFN) had completed Phase 1 of human trials. Publication of the results is expected in January, depending on the completion of the official data analysis.
Dr. Kayvon Modjarrad, director of infectious diseases at Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (WRAIR) and co-inventor of SpFN, told , „We’re testing our vaccine against all the different variants, including omicron,“ the strain even in people who have received booster shots.
We’ll share what we know about pan-coronavirus vaccines and the Army’s COVID-19 vaccine, including how it works and when it could become available.
For more, learn about , why you shouldn’t „,“ mixing and matching , and the .
Why do we need a pan-coronavirus vaccine?
White House Chief Medical Adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci recently touted the importance of a universal vaccine to protect against all COVID variants. In an , Fauci said a universal COVID vaccine „would mean that the initial vaccination would cover all of these little variants, so you wouldn’t have to worry.“
„We want a pan-coronavirus vaccine so that you have it on the shelf to respond to the next viral pandemic,“ Fauci said. „Ultimately, you want to get a vaccine that covers everything.“
Fauci’s organization, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, committed big to that goal in fall 2021, — Duke University, University of Wisconsin, and Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital — to develop and research pan-coronavirus vaccines. for its universal „mosaic nanoparticle“ vaccine.
What is the US Army COVID vaccine?
The three COVID-19 vaccines authorized right now for use in the US take two approaches to preventing infection: The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines use to build up immunity, while the Johnson & Johnson vaccine uses a harmless rhinovirus to train the body’s immune system to respond to COVID.
The Spike Ferritin Nanoparticle COVID-19 vaccine, or SpFN, takes a third approach, using a harmless portion of the COVID-19 virus to spur the body’s defenses against COVID.
SpFN also has less restrictive storage and handling requirements than the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines, allowing it to be used in a wider variety of situations. It can be stored between 36 and 46 degrees Fahrenheit for up to six months and at room temperature for up to one month, . Pfizer’s vaccine requires an ultracold freezer (between minus 112 and minus 76 degrees F) for shipment and storage and is only when stored in a refrigerator.
The Army’s vaccine has been tested with two shots, 28 days apart, and also with a third shot after six months.
How does the Army vaccine work against COVID-19 and other coronaviruses?
The vaccines from Moderna, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson all target the specific virus — SARS-CoV-2 — that causes COVID-19. But Army scientists designed their vaccine to protect against future strains of COVID as well as other coronaviruses.
The Army’s SpFN vaccine is shaped like a soccer ball with 24 faces. Scientists can attach the spikes of multiple coronavirus strains to each of the different faces, allowing them to customize the vaccine for any new COVID variants that arise.
„The accelerating emergence of human coronaviruses throughout the past two decades and the rise of SARS-CoV-2 variants, including most recently omicron, underscore the continued need for next-generation preemptive vaccines that confer broad protection against coronavirus diseases,“ Modjarrad . „Our strategy has been to develop a ‚pan-coronavirus‘ vaccine technology that could potentially offer safe, effective and durable protection against multiple coronavirus strains and species.“