Two Va. Universities Developing COVID Vaccine Candidate

Scientists at two Virginia colleges are working together on a coronavirus vaccine candidate.

The vaccine, a collaborative effort between the University of Virginia and Virginia Tech, has only been tested on pigs so far, WTOP reported.

“Pigs are also very similar in physiology and immunology to people — they may be the closest animal models to people other than primates,” Virginia Tech Daily wrote.

The project has two vaccines, one for the novel coronavirus and the other to protect against the pig coronavirus. The researchers determined that both produced a “potent” immune response and “provided significant protections against clinical disease,” WTOP reported.

The candidate is also significantly less expensive to produce, costing $1 per dose, the researchers said.

In comparison, the U.S. pays between $10 to $19.50 per dose for the three vaccines currently authorized by the Food and Drug Administration, WTOP reported.

Additionally, the Virginia/Virginia Tech vaccine would be “easy to store and transport, even in remote areas of the world, and could be produced in mass quantities using existing vaccine-manufacturing factories.”

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