Finally it appears medical researchers at Oxford University may etch their names on sands of time as they announced a discovery of a vaccine to fight and cure Coronavirus, a disease that has been declared a pandemic and number public enemy by the World Health Organisation, WHO.
According to the Guardian of London animal test trials will begin next week, with human trials on all ages to start as early as next month.
The newspaper reported that researchers at Oxford University are working on a coronavirus vaccine, and they are angling to have it ready by the end of the year, with a safety trial on humans as early as next month.
The university’s team is led by Dr. Sarah Gilbert, who leads the Jenner Institute’s influenza vaccine and emerging pathogens program. The vaccine will be known as ChAdOx1.
Oxford’s vaccine will begin animal trials next week, while for human trials, the university is reportedly recruiting people of all ages, but will focus more on older people who are most vulnerable to the coronavirus and less responsive to vaccines due to their weak immune systems.
Dr. Adrian Hill, the director of the Jenner Institute at Oxford, said: “We are conscious that a vaccine is needed as soon as possible and certainly by June-July, when we expect a big peak in mortality.”
“This is not a normal situation. We will follow all standard trial safety requirements, but as soon as we have a vaccine that’s working, we anticipate there will be an accelerated pathway to get it deployed to save lives. The more vaccine we can provide sooner, the better.”
Both the U.K. and U.S. experts have said they expect a vaccine to be ready within 12 to 18 months. Vaccines are being developed around the world, especially in the U.S., Germany, and China.
Pen ultimate Tuesday, Oxford University announced that its infectious disease experts were also providing evidence to the U.K. and European governments for a coronavirus mobile app for instant contact tracing.
Dr. Christophe Fraser, who works at Oxford University’s Big Data Institute said: “Our analysis suggests that almost half of coronavirus transmissions occur in the very early phase of infection, before symptoms appear, so we need a fast and effective mobile app for alerting people who have been exposed.”
“The instant mobile app concept is very simple. If you are diagnosed with coronavirus, the people you’ve recently come into contact with will be messaged advising them to isolate. If this mobile app is developed and deployed rapidly, and enough people opt-in to use such an approach, we can slow the spread of coronavirus and mitigate against devastating human, economic and social impacts,” he said.
The novel coronavirus known as COVID-19 emerged in Wuhan, China last December, and has spread to at least 163 countries and territories. The World Health Organization declared the outbreak a pandemic.
Out of more than 245,000 confirmed cases, the death toll now exceeds 10,000, and over 86,000 have recovered, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University in the U.S.
Despite the rising number of cases, most victims suffer only mild symptoms and recover.
This cheery news will be a big relief globally especially in Africa that is most vulnerable because of infrastructure and health care deficiencies. On March 27, the Nigerian government got a boost in its fight against Coronavirus when it received some consignments of medical equipment to fight the virus.
It was reported that the receipt of donation of medical supplies from Chinese businessman and CEO of Ali Baba; Jack Ma, had shot Nigeria ‘s testing capacity up by 32%.
Before then, the country had carried out a paltry 262 tests for the virus as at March 25, according to reports . The sum is incosequential compared to South Africa which had carried out over 20,000 tests with a tally of over 1000 cases.
As at March 26, Nigeria had 65 confirmed cases with majority in the commercial capital, Lagos. The portal today rep