SARS-CoV-2 Prototype Vaccine Protects Macaques

May 28, 2020 | Biotechnology

Reading time: 2-3 minutes

Fresh from Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology News (GEN), here is an interesting Biotech article for you:

The only thing better than one new study showing positive COVID-19 vaccine results in monkeys is two studies. Two papers, published back-to-back in Science this week are some of the first to show that non-human primates can develop protective immunity to SARS-CoV-2—a finding critical for vaccine and public health strategies.

“The global COVID-19 pandemic has made the development of a vaccine a top biomedical priority, but very little is currently known about protective immunity to the SARS-CoV-2 virus,” said Dan H. Barouch, MD, PhD, professor of medicine, Harvard Medical School, director, Center for Virology and Vaccine Research, BIDMC, and senior author on both studies. “In these two studies, we demonstrate in rhesus macaques that prototype vaccines protected against SARS-CoV-2 infection and that SARS-CoV-2 infection protected against re-exposure.”

Earlier this year, research investigating cynomolgus macaques found these animals to be promising models for testing COVID-19 therapeutics. In order to probe whether infection with SARS-CoV-2 results in protective immunity against re-exposure, researchers developed a macaque model of SARS-CoV-2 infection that recapitulated certain aspects of human SARS-CoV-2 infection.

In the paper, “SARS-CoV-2 infection protects against rechallenge in rhesus macaques”, the group tested whether nine adult animals who had cleared the virus were immune to viral re-challenge 35 days later.

After exposing nine adult macaques to the SARS-CoV-2 virus, the researchers monitored viral levels as the animals recovered. All nine animals recovered and developed antibodies against the virus. More than a month after the initial infection, the team re-exposed the rhesus macaques to th... View the whole article at the Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology News (GEN) Blog.

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