Vaccine science and technology is advancing. Next generation vaccines could change how we combat infectious diseases, and it’s important to understand how the technology works.
Vaccines are rigorously studied and tested — but there are challenges along the way.
Vaccines are about to change the world…again. mRNA Vaccines are currently being used to battle COVID-19, and have the potential to eradicate diseases like HIV, herpes, sickle cell anemia, and even cancer. Learn how the vaccines work and where the technology could be headed in this explainer video.
Currently, the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines for COVID-19 use the mRNA technology developed at Penn by infectious disease expert Drew Weissman, MD, PhD, along with longtime research collaborator Katalin Karikó, PhD, an adjunct associate professor. Dr. Weissman has been studying mRNA vaccines for decades. This technology could change the way future vaccines are made to prevent countless other diseases.
Just two months ago, the incredible performance of new vaccines from Moderna and Pfizer had people cheering for an imminent end to the pandemic. But an onslaught of fast-spreading and potentially dangerous mutations of the virus changed that.
So now, even as pharma companies ramp up production in the early stages of a massive rollout, they are racing to retool their vaccine strategies. Robert Langreth reports that booster shots could give drugmakers a lucrative new revenue stream.
The second impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump begins this week as Republicans and his legal team argue the impeachment is unconstitutional.
And, South Africa has paused a planned deployment of a coronavirus vaccine from AstraZeneca after a study there showed it may be less effective against a new strain of the virus detected there. Also, how worried are U.S. health officials about variant strains of the virus in the U.S.?
Researchers are scrambling to understand the biology of new coronavirus variants and the impact they might have on vaccine efficacy.
Around the world, concern is growing about the impact that new, faster-spreading variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus will have on the pandemic.
In this episode of Coronapod, we discuss what these variants are, and the best way to respond to them, in the face of increasing evidence that some can evade the immunity produced by vaccination or previous infection.
Factual and reliable information is vital to creating trust in vaccines and to overcoming the pandemic. Ed Carr, The Economist’s deputy editor, and Natasha Loder, our health policy editor, answer some of the big questions about the global vaccination drive.
Chapters 00:00 – Challenges in vaccinating the world 00:45 – Trust in vaccines 02:30 – mRNA vaccines 03:23 – Impact of variants on vaccination 04:29 – Time between vaccine doses 06:09 – Mandatory vaccines for travel?
As countries like the United States and United Kingdom inoculate their residents with never-before used vaccine technology, others, including Russia, China, and India, are investing in more traditional approaches, like inactivated coronavirus vaccines. But no matter the technique, together they have the potential to create multiple lines of defense against SARS-CoV-2. Science senior correspondent Jon Cohen explains how each of these vaccines can protect us from severe illness—and what understanding the details of our immune responses could mean for the future of human trials.