Coronavirus Vaccine Being Manufactured In Australia Shows No Signs Of Side Effects
A coronavirus vaccine being manufactured by a research team in Australia has shown no signs of side effects.
The University of Queensland has been hard at work to try and come up with a cure for the pandemic and their latest research has shown some very promising signs.
After injecting their potential vaccine into hamsters, it triggered an immune system in the animals that helped protect it against the disease.
The UQ scientists are using a different method to achieve a cure for the coronavirus to the one developed by Oxford University and secured by UK pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca. The Australian government has sent a Letter of Intent to AstraZeneca to secure tens of millions of vials of the vaccine if their tests become successful.
The candidate vaccine brewed in Queensland is considered the frontrunner in Australia.
Keith Chappell from the UQ School of Chemistry said: "Following a single dose, we see a really good level of protection against virus in the lung," he said.
"Around half of the animals had no virus at all detected in the lungs and the other half had reduced levels. We saw a marked reduction in the severity of the disease in the hamsters."
He admitted that it's just 'one step' in the very long process to getting the vaccine ready. It has already been tested on humans as early as July and larger trials will be needed in the coming months to ensure it's safe.
There have been 120 participants in human trials so far and Dr Chappell said there have been 'absolutely no safety concerns with all the participants dosed so far'.
The team at the University of Queensland presented their latest findings to the International Society of Vaccines in the hope it will help other teams around the world better understand how to develop and further their vaccine research.
Dr Chappell said this process is vitally important to information sharing, adding: "Until now, it has been extremely difficult to compare, but we are the first ones to make public how the vaccine is performing."
Experts say the UQ vaccine is at a level that it would be able to be mass produced for Australians if and when it's deemed to be safe and effective in combating the coronavirus. It's unclear how much longer that will take but it's good to know that Aussie researchers are on the cusp of something great.