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April 23, 2020

MIT researchers in US advance Covid-19 vaccine into preclinical tests

A research team at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the US have advanced a Covid-19 vaccine candidate into preclinical tests in animal models.

A research team at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the US have advanced a Covid-19 vaccine candidate into preclinical tests in animal models.

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Led by professor Christopher Love from MIT’s Koch Institute for Iterative Cancer Research, the team worked to develop preclinical materials for rapid progress of the candidate to clinical trials.

The candidate is said to be a subunit vaccine, which uses a small part of the virus’ protein to stimulate the immune system to detect the virus and prevent infection of host cells.

Commonly, subunit vaccines act by triggering antibodies that attach to and neutralise the virus, helping the body fight the virus.

While Love’s team is performing immunogenicity and formulation studies for this vaccine candidate, they are also working to create more vaccine candidates.

Simultaneously, the MIT team is focused on manufacturing an affordable vaccine at a large-scale, with an aim to produce billions of doses. The researchers collaborated with the Gates Foundation to work on towards their manufacturing goal.

Currently, the US Department of Health and Human Services is aiding Janssen Pharmaceuticals in developing 300 million vaccine doses.

The Love Lab is expediting the readiness of preclinical materials for manufacturing in order to meet the estimated requirement of billions of vaccine doses.

Love noted: “To reach the widest number of people, we need to be very intentional about incorporating in aspects of the manufacturability of a vaccine, even at the early stages of discovery.”

By concurrently working on the manufacturing process and animal testing, the team hopes to cut the time needed to transfer their processes to manufacturers.

In a statement, the team said: “By overlapping these stages of development, the whole process becomes streamlined, as manufacturers learn to work with materials, becoming better-prepared to produce vaccines at the scale needed once trials are completed.”

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Navigate your business through the ‘new normal’

COVID-19 continues to dominate headlines the world over. It has already affected our lives forever. The way we work, shop, eat, seek medical advice, and socialize will all be different in the future. Quite how different remains to be seen, but all industries must plan for multiple eventualities.  Faced with an explosion of conflicting information on how to plan and implement successful recovery strategies, decision-makers are in dire need of a single, reliable source of intelligence.   GlobalData’s COVID-19 Executive Briefing gives you access to unparalleled data and insights to successfully navigate the uncertain road to recovery across the world’s largest industries. Understand every aspect of this disruptive theme by delving into: 
  •  COVID-19 infection update, with statistics on the spread, testing by country, as well as the latest data on vaccines and therapeutic developments 
  • Economic impact overview, covering stock market indices, GDP, unemployment rates, policy responses & GlobalData’s economic recovery scorecards 
  • Sector developments, with access to sector insight summaries, cross-sector indices and the leaders and laggards in each industry vertical 
Whatever your company’s imminent strategic plans, the long-lasting impact of COVID-19 must not be overlooked. Find out how to futureproof your business operations – download our report today. 
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