COVID-19 Vaccine

Dr. Fauci is ‘cautiously optimistic,’ about COVID-19 vaccine in late 2020

Suzanne Judd, Ph.D., an Epidemiologist at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Public Health, joins Yahoo Finance’s Akiko Fujita to discuss the latest coronavirus developments, as Dr. Anthony Fauci testifies before the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis.

During a hearing on Capitol Hill, Dr. Anthony Fauci said he was “cautiously optimistic” about a coronavirus vaccine.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, stated before a coronavirus subcommittee hearing on Friday that there are multiple COVID-19 vaccine candidates, which “are moving along at a very rapid pace.”

Fauci added that he hopes there will be a vaccine that is safe and effective by "late fall and early winter."

The country’s top doctor also resisted efforts by Rep. Jim Jordan to turn his testimony into a criticism of protests against racial injustice.

"Should we limit the protesting?" Jordan asked. When Fauci said he was not in a position to make such a recommendation, the lawmaker retorted, "You make all kinds of recommendations."

"I’m not favoring anybody over anybody," Fauci replied. "I’m telling you what is the danger, and you can make your own conclusion about that. You should stay away from crowds, no matter where the crowds are."

How quickly can we expect to see a coronavirus vaccine? Dr. Anthony Fauci offers his insight into why he’s hopeful that it’ll be sooner rather than later. Watch his full interview with WebMD Chief Medical Officer Dr. John Whyte here:

Tracy Taylor details what Dr. fauci thinks about a mask mandate. And also, Dr. Francis Collins dicusses when we will see results from the phase 3 clinical trial from Coronavirus vaccine testing.

Africa: Leaders, experts discuss virus vaccine efforts

By Addis Getachew

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AA) – A two-day consultative session on the development of a vaccine against the novel coronavirus in Africa commenced on Thursday.

In a statement, the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) said medical experts and various stakeholders discussed “a roadmap for the development of a safe … affordable … and accessible COVID-19 vaccine in Africa, with the involvement of Africans.”

“The meeting brought together African leaders, public health professionals, policymakers, the media, civil society, community leaders, private sector representatives, pharmaceutical industry experts, and [other] partners,” read the statement.

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, who is also chairperson of the African Union for this year, stressed the need for “cooperation and a sense of urgency” to find a suitable vaccine.

He said the vaccine must be made in Africa with raw materials sourced from the continent.

“Success in developing and providing access to a safe vaccine requires an innovative and collaborative approach, with significant local manufacturing in Africa. We need to support the contribution of African scientists and healthcare professionals. We need to act with urgency,” he said.

While he may have referred to the artemisia plant potion developed by Madagascar to treat COVID-19, Sub-Saharan Africa has no standing globally in terms of vaccine manufacturing.

According to the statement, World Health Organization chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus spoke about the significant disruptions to routine public health services across Africa due to the pandemic.

Africa CDC Director John Nkengasong said the onset of COVID-19 was delayed in Africa but the number of cases and deaths was increasing rapidly by the day.

He said Africa must be prepared for a rise in infections, as witnessed in Latin America after easing of lockdowns.

Nkengasong said the availability of a vaccine is essential for African countries to return to full economic activity.

South Africa to start first COVID-19 vaccine trial

By Hassan Isilow

JOHANNESBURG (AA) – South Africa announced Tuesday that it will begin its first clinical trial this week for a vaccine against the novel coronavirus.

Participants from across Africa will be vaccinated in the South African-led trial, researchers said during a virtual news conference hosted at the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) in Johannesburg.

The South African Ox1Cov-19 Vaccine VIDA-Trial aims to find a vaccine that will prevent infection.
“This is a landmark moment for South Africa and Africa at this stage of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Shabir Madhi, Professor of Vaccinology at Wits University and director of the South Africa Medical Research Council (SAMRC) Vaccines and Infectious Diseases Analytics Research Unit (VIDA), who is leading the trial.

“We began screening participants for the South African Oxford 1 COVID-19 vaccine trial last week and the first participants will be vaccinated this week,” Madhi said.
The school is collaborating with the University of Oxford and the Oxford Jenner Institute on the trial.
The vaccine being used in the trial is the same one used in the UK and Brazil, according to a statement posted on Wits’ website.

South Africa is the worst-hit country on the continent with 101,590 cases and 1,991 deaths.
Health officials have warned of a surge in infections in the coming days.
At least 53,444 people have recovered from COVID-19 in the country, which translates to a recovery rate of 52.6%.
Authorities have conducted nearly 1.4 million tests since the virus was first detected in the country nearly three months ago, with 25,116 carried out in the past 24 hours.

Nigerian researchers announce COVID-19 vaccine

ANKARA (AA) – A team of Nigerian scientists has announced the discovery of a preventive vaccine against the novel coronavirus, local media reported Saturday.

"It is our passion to be a solution provider to such a global pandemic, and we are ready to throw our weights behind the team and make the vaccine a reality," news website Leadership quoted the leader of the COVID-19 Research Group, Dr. Oladipo Kolawole.

"The vaccine is real. We have validated it several times. It is targeted at Africans, but will also work for other races. It will work. It cannot be faked. This is a result of the determination. It took a lot of scientific efforts," Kolawole told reporters at Adeleke University in Nigeria's Eda state Friday.

"The population of those that need vaccines is more than those that need drugs. That is why the research focused on a vaccine," he noted.

The study that the vaccine was based on was initially funded by the Trinity Immunodeficient Laboratory and Helix Biogen Consult, Ogbomosho, with roughly 7.8 million Nigerian nairas ($20,000), according to the report.

Kolawole went on to say that his team had worked extensively on the virus's genome from samples across Africa to select the best potential vaccine candidates.

The researchers of the team had made the possible latent vaccine constructs, Kolawole revealed, without naming the vaccine.

He added that it would take a minimum of 18 months to release the vaccine for widespread use, due to a large amount of research, analysis and approvals required by medical authorities.

The highest death toll on the continent has been reported in Egypt with 2,017 fatalities, followed by South Africa with 1,831 deaths, Algeria with 825, Sudan with 506 and Nigeria with 475.

The countries with the highest number of cases were South Africa with 87,715, Egypt with 52,211, Nigeria with 18,480 and Algeria with 11,504.

After originating in Wuhan, China last December, COVID-19 has spread to at least 188 countries and regions.

The pandemic has killed more than 460,000 worldwide, with more than 8.6 million confirmed cases, while recoveries have surpassed 4.2 million, according to figures compiled by Johns Hopkins University in the US.