Promising results from COVID-19 vaccine candidate tested at UK

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) – Researchers around the world and in Kentucky are hoping to develop an effective COVID-19 vaccine.

“We need to think about global responses, which means millions and millions of vaccines,” says Jerry Woodward, a University of Kentucky professor of microbiology, immunology, and molecular genetics.

Woodward led a pre-clinical study at UK, and says the vaccine tested there seems to stand out among candidates.

The vaccine, created by PDS Biotechnology, stimulates an important part of the immune system to activate T-cells.

After being tested on mice, Woodward says the results have been promising.

“After vaccination, we let them sit for 60 days and then measured their responses and they still have good anti-coronavirus antibodies and T-cells.”

This vaccine is one of hundreds of candidates being developed around the world.

“India is producing, it’s very far along in producing a vaccine. China is very far along in producing a vaccine. That’s a good thing for the world. We need that many. If we’re going to want to really control this worldwide global pandemic, we have to have a global response.”

With all the extra effort, Woodward is hopeful a vaccine will be available by the end of the year or early 2021.

But even when that day comes, he says the future still depends on one major variable.

“If the public can trust science.”

The vaccine is expected to advance to a Phase 1 Clinical Trial in humans soon.

Copyright 2020 WKYT. All rights reserved.

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