Around the world the race to develop a vaccine against the New Coronavirus continues apace. The World Health Organization is now tracking more than 170 candidate vaccines. In the pre-clinical stage, researchers test if the vaccine triggers an immune response in animals. In phase 1 testing, the vaccine is given to a small group of people to see if it is safe. Phase 2 involves a somewhat larger research group to test dosages; and in phase 3, the vaccine is given to thousands of people to make sure it’s effective. So far there are no successful candidates. Vaccines normally require years of testing; and time to build up production volume. The WHO has said it doesn’t expect widespread vaccinations against coronavirus until mid-2021. But even that is optimistic. Germany’s top biotech companies and clinics are rushing to come up with a vaccine to defeat the novel coronavirus. Some are already carrying out human testing – after the lengthy approval process was speeded up. The stakes are that high.
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