The First Covid Vaccines May Not Prevent Covid Infection

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    Desperation for a way to keep economies from collapsing under the weight of Covid-19 could mean settling for a vaccine that prevents people from getting really sick or dying but doesn’t stop them from catching the coronavirus. From a report: Although a knock-out blow against the virus is the ultimate goal, early vaccines may come with limitations on what they can deliver, according to Robin Shattock, an Imperial College London professor leading development of an experimental shot. “Is that protection against infection?” Shattock said. “Is it protection against illness? Is it protection against severe disease? It’s quite possible a vaccine that only protects against severe disease would be very useful.” As countries emerge warily from lockdowns, leaders are looking to a preventive shot as the route to return to pre-pandemic life. Fueled by billions of dollars in government investment, vaccines from little-known companies like China’s CanSino Biologics and giants like Pfizer Inc. and AstraZeneca Plc are in development. At least one of the fastest-moving experimental shots has already advanced into human trials after showing an impact on severe disease — but less so on infection — in animals. Experts say such a product would probably be widely used if approved, even if that’s as much as it contributes, until a more effective version comes to market. “Vaccines need to protect against disease, not necessarily infection,” said Dennis Burton, an immunologist and vaccine researcher at Scripps Research in La Jolla, California. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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