Photo: Getty In the world race for a vaccine against coronavirus
Of developing a drug that creates in humans the immunity to the COVID-19, different countries together allocate huge funds. Each hopes that its population will receive the first vaccination.
Held at the initiative of the European Commission’s online summit in early may, € 7.4 billion donated dozens of countries and international organizations to accelerate the development of vaccines against coronavirus.
On Saturday, June 27, will host another global charity event to raise funds for the same purpose – a concert with participation of world pop stars.
The invitation of the head of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen followed by Shakira, Coldplay, Jennifer Hudson, usher, Justin Bieber, Quavo, Chloe x Halle, J. Balvin, the Queens and many others.
Ilona Kickbush started to work at the world health organization 30 years ago and now teaches at the graduate Institute of international studies, I don’t remember such enthusiasm.
“This is a revolution,’ she said in an interview with DW. – There was a General will, which in earlier times never happened.”
But despite all the unity of each country hopes to become the first, whose population will receive vaccination against SARS-CoV-2.
Governments rely on different firms
For example, the British pharmaceutical company AstraZenka you can see what a sharp competitive struggle is conducted between countries in the pursuit of a vaccine. The firm has already developed a promising drug.
“In September we will know whether we have an effective vaccine or not,” – shared with the correspondent the head of the air force AstraZenka Pascal Soriot.
But now many millions of doses have not admitted to using the drug staked, the governments of UK, USA, Global Alliance for vaccines and immunization (GAVI), and together Germany, France, Italy and the Netherlands. But it is unclear who will receive this vaccine first if it really will be effective.
Therefore, the governments of different countries are betting on several promising “horses”. And this is the right strategy, says Alexander Nuikin from consulting firm EY.
“Still it is not clear who will come first, he told DW, so well that government subsidies are distributed in large numbers”.
Analysts EY consider that of the more than 160 projects, which are underway in different countries to find a vaccine, 97 percent will not be brought to the stage of certification.
In the US the hunt for a vaccine leads General
In the US race for the vaccine acquires the features of a military operation. The management is entrusted to four-star General Gustav Perna – military logistics specialist and the head of command of logistics of the land forces of the United States.
The General has received from the Washington administration $ 10 billion by January, the country had enough doses to inoculate all Americans.
The German government has gone even further – over 300 million euros was included in the share of potential of the vaccine manufacturer, the firm CureVac, which ten days ago were allowed to conduct clinical trials of its new drug.
At its creation were used the so-called RNA-technology (ribonucleic acid, RNA), in which the vaccine contains part of the genetic material of the virus.
CureVac, a German from tübingen is among the 16 firms, which, according to the who, has officially tested their vaccine on humans. It is believed that the German government has spent 300 million referred to in order to stay ahead of foreign competitors, also has his eye on this biotech company.
Main rivals – the US and China
In addition AstraZenka, CureVac and another German company from Mainz to the leaders in the development of vaccines are also several American and Chinese pharmaceutical companies. And the rivalry between the US and China in this sphere is becoming more acute.
Both Washington and Beijing understand that the one who first get the vaccine against the coronavirus that is crucial to restart the national economy.
David Fidler of the Council on foreign relations (Council on Foreign Relations) in an interview with DW did not rule out that in the course can go and methods of espionage in order to access the latest scientific discoveries in this field.
For all his optimism and Ilona Kickbush believes the US and China are not the most reliable allies of the international Alliance, United by a desire as soon as possible to succeed in developing a vaccine against the coronavirus.
Financial risks for pharmaceutical companies
There are doubts, and in the interest of the pharmaceutical and biotechnology firms in international cooperation.
Who initiative Act Accelerator or created by GAVI platform Covax, aims to make invented something when a vaccine is available worldwide and limit to the patent right, is unlikely to cause them a lot of enthusiasm.
On the one hand, says Alexander Nuikin of EY’s pharmaceutical industry is aware of its responsibility, it is making remarkable efforts, but on the other, in the end, the invention and production of vaccines should be for such enterprises profitable.
But the financial risk is great, because many companies have already started manufacturing their products in the hope that if successful clinical trials and approval for use they will be able to quickly start selling its unique vaccine in different countries of the world.
However, Nuyken does not expect that a vaccine for the coronavirus will appear before the end of the year. Moreover, it does not exclude, that it never will be, as there is still no vaccination against AIDS.