Infectious Diseases

Coronavirus Vaccine Update: Who is Working on Developing Vaccines for COVID-19, and When will it be Available?

Posted on 14 April 2020

Almost every country in the world has now reported COVID-19 cases, and fatalities. SARS-CoV-2 is the coronavirus behind the global pandemic, and the reason why we have lost over 120,000 people in the last few months. Our immune system seems to be incapable of defending against this virus, especially if you are elderly, or have poor health.

But there is hope — biotechnologists, virologists, and vaccine manufacturers all over the world are working around-the-clock to develop new vaccines against the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus. We at Gowing Life are tracking the development of every novel vaccine, and treatment for COVID-19, and we are constantly updating our spreadsheet. One of our main information source Nature Reviews Drug Discovery recently reviewed the entire global landscape of COVID-19 vaccine development, and here are the highlights of their findings:

Global COVID-19 vaccine R&D landscape includes 115 vaccine candidates. Source: https://www.nature.com/articles/d41573-020-00073-5
  • As of 8 April 2020, the global COVID-19 vaccine R&D landscape includes 115 vaccine candidates.
  • 78 are confirmed as active/under-development, while 37 are unconfirmed/development-status-unknown.
  • Of the 78 confirmed active projects, 73 are currently at exploratory or preclinical stages.
  • Only 5 vaccines are currently being clinically tested in human.
  • Of the confirmed active vaccine candidates, 56 (72%) are being developed by private/industry developers, with the remaining 22 (28%) of projects being led by academic, public sector and other non-profit organizations
  • Most COVID-19 vaccine development activity is in North America, with 36 (46%) developers of the confirmed active vaccine candidates compared with 14 (18%) in China, 14 (18%) in Asia (excluding China) and Australia, and 14 (18%) in Europe
  • Given the imperative for speed, there is an indication that vaccine could be available under emergency use or similar protocols by early 2021.
The list of 5 vaccines that are currently being clinically tested in human. Source: https://www.nature.com/articles/d41573-020-00073-5

Looking at the global effort to create a vaccine for COVID-19 should give us cautious optimism about our future. A vaccine may not be ready for another year, but it will come, and we will overcome the loss and suffering due to the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus. While we wait for the successful clinical trials of these and other vaccines we can do our part to protect the vulnerable by staying at home, and social distancing.


References

The COVID-19 vaccine development landscape (Nature Reviews Drug Discovery): https://www.nature.com/articles/d41573-020-00073-5

Gowing Life - COVID-19 Treatment and Vaccine Tracker: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/e/2PACX-1vSCNI8PwNHF-3ykHpScMoW7lBt7MoayU0MhNCZauh71IljqpGhyl7aiWUN7-_jUNPJoVqv0n4JahHNp/pubhtml

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