Home » Health » Based on smallpox vaccine, Japan develops coronavirus vaccine, which could provide lifelong immunity

Based on smallpox vaccine, Japan develops coronavirus vaccine, which could provide lifelong immunity


The team of researchers led by Professor Mitinori Kohara was based on the smallpox vaccine developed in the 18th century by the British physician Edward Jenner. It contained a harmless virus for humans that eventually helped mankind overcome a deadly disease.

The idea of ​​the Japanese scientists is to create a recombinant virus containing the spike protein of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19. In their view, this approach could lead to the development of lifelong cellular immunity against coronavirus.

Experiments in mice using a recombinant virus encoding the avian influenza gene showed high levels of antibodies that persisted for more than 20 months. At the same time, all vaccinated mice, which became infected with bird flu after 20 months (which is the average lifespan of a mouse), managed to survive.

“We have been working on various vaccination technologies, such as adenovirus and RNA vaccines, but vaccines that use the smallpox virus vector are the most powerful of all,” Kohara told The Japan Times. Moreover, this type of vaccine, in his opinion, has few side effects and does not require special methods of transport and storage.

According to preliminary data, the Japanese drug manufacturer Nobelpharma will conduct the first and second phase of clinical trials of the vaccine in the first half of 2023. The study is expected to involve 150-200 people, including those who have had covid and those who have been vaccinated.

According to Kohara, if the vaccine is effective and safe, the final phase of clinical trials will begin immediately afterwards, but it will not be possible to bring the vaccine to market (provided there is adequate funding for the project) before 2024.

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