J&J Enters 2019-nCoV Vaccine Race

Coronavirus vaccine candidates include vaccines from Inovio, Moderna, and Vaccitech

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The chief scientific officer of Johnson & Johnson (J&J) told CNBC ‘he believes the drugmaker can create a vaccine in the coming months to fight against the fast-spreading coronavirus.’

The new human coronavirus is named 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV).

This new virus is rapidly spreading around the globe.

As an example, China’s National Health Committees reported 2,846 confirmed cases of the new coronavirus, with 5,794 suspected cases and 81 related fatalities during 2020.

Dr. Stoffels said on January 27, 2020, ‘the pharmaceutical company needed to start from scratch on this vaccine, much like how it operated in the Zika outbreak.’

‘Though J&J could shave 2 to 3 months off of that due to technological advances,’ Dr. Stoffels said. 

“We are going to take an approach with at least 5 different constructs and different partners and collaborations all over the world in order to see which part of the virus we can use to make an effective vaccine and develop a model that we can invest in,’ concluded Dr. Stoffels.

In general, the potential vaccines can be classified into six types: viral vector-based vaccine, DNA vaccine, subunit vaccine, nanoparticle-based vaccine, inactivated-whole virus vaccine and live-attenuated vaccine, which are discussed in detail.

The need for human coronaviruses vaccines was first identified in the mid-1960s. The best-known coronaviruses are Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV), and the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV).

As of January 27, 2020, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved any preventive or therapeutic vaccine for SARS, MERS or the 2019-nCoV for use in the USA. 

Although several vaccine candidates are currently in clinical trials, many still remain in the pre-clinical stage. In the broadest sense, the development stage of a vaccine refers to a point along the continuum from disease definition and basic research through clinical trials to licensure. 

Human coronavirus vaccine candidate news

January 23, 2020 - Inovio Pharmaceuticals, Inc. said in a press release published on January 23, 2020, that the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations funding will support Inovio's preclinical and clinical development through Phase 1 human testing of the INO-4800 vaccine candidate. 

December 21, 2019 – A Phase Ib clinical trial in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has launched to evaluate a vaccine candidate to protect people against the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus. 

July 25, 2019 – A Pennsylvania-based, clinical-stage biotechnology company announced positive results from the first-in-human, Phase 1 clinical trial of its INO-4700 vaccine against the MERS virus.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases said in a press statement published on January 23, 2020, "The NIH is in the process of taking the first steps towards the development of a vaccine, and it would take a few months until the first phase of the clinical trials get underway and more than a year until a vaccine might be available." 

A new study published in The Lancet on January 24, 2020, with preliminary data from Wuhan, China, indicates similar symptoms between the first 41 cases of the 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) and SARS. 

Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases, says the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). CoVs that infect animals can also evolve and become a human coronavirus.

In response, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) established a 2019-nCoV Incident Management Structure on January 7, 2020, and issued Travel Alerts on January 12th, 17th, 22nd, and 23rd notifying the global community of their potential health risks from the 2019-nCoV virus.

Coronavirus vaccine news published by Precision Vaccinations.