Home Health Cobervax, the ‘low-cost’ vaccine created by an Italian scientist

Cobervax, the ‘low-cost’ vaccine created by an Italian scientist

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It could be renamed the ‘vaccine of the last’. It has not been patented, nor will it ever be. It is cheap and could help all those poor countries that have failed to immunize their population. An Italian scientist gave the news Maria Elena Bottazzi, co-director of the Vaccine Development Center at Texas Children’s Hospital and Baylor College of Medicine, a center that brings together private and nonprofit institutions in Houston, United States.

Corbervax has already been authorized in India as an emergency vaccine. It uses a traditional technology based on recombinant proteins and has characteristics such that it can be produced on a large scale at low cost.

The Italian researcher

Bottazzi, an Italian-Honduran microbiologist who works in the US, is convinced that Cobervax will soon be authorized also in Indonesia, Bangladesh and Botswana. A vaccine, therefore, which promises to address the ongoing humanitarian crisis, for all those millions of people who cannot get vaccinated.

To date, however, Cobervax has proven effective against the Delta variant and not yet on Omicron. It is more than 90% effective compared to the Wuhan native coronavirus and more than 80% on Delta.

Since 2011 the team, led by Bottazzi and his colleague Peter Hotez of the Texas Children’s Hospital Center for Vaccine Development, studies prototype vaccines against Sars and Mers. With the coronavirus pandemic, researchers have readapted their work and thus created Corbevax, what has also been called: the “world vaccine against Covid-19″.

The process to create this immunization involves the use of yeast, the same method by which vaccines against hepatitis B are produced.

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The only one without a patent

To date, there are over 60 vaccines that use the same technology as Cobervax, but the peculiarity of the latter is that the researchers do not want to patent it, allowing anyone who has the ability to reproduce it.

For some time, activists have been asking the pharmaceutical giants who produced the immunizations, especially Pfizer and Moderna, to share the technology and know-how to produce other vaccines. According to the World Health Organization, low-income countries, which have few facilities for research and production of vaccines, have only vaccinated one in nine people.

A very distant data with what happens, for example, in the United States where 67% of the population was immunized with two doses and a third received the third dose.

Cobervax’s effectiveness against Omicron is still under scrutiny, but if it were to be successful against this new variant as well, we could have a new weapon to counter the coronavirus.

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