'Super' vaccine created that stops a range of coronaviruses in their tracks - including Covid-19
New jab could end pandemics caused by diseases that emerge in animals, say scientists
By Mark Waghorn and Rachel Hains, Nottingham Post (UK)
8 Oct 2021
A jab that stops the spread of a range of coronaviruses has been created by scientists.
It could end pandemics caused by zoonotic diseases that emerge in animals.
In experiments, the vaccine halted five different types in their tracks - including Covid-19.
Lead author Professor Tomohiro Kurosaki, of Osaka University, said: "Prior coronavirus epidemics such as SARS-CoV-1 and MERS-CoV have occurred due to zoonotic coronaviruses crossing the species barrier.
"The potential for the emergence of similar viruses poses a significant threat to global public health, even in the face of effective vaccines for current viruses."
The Japanese team genetically engineered the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2 - the virus that causes Covid.
Covering its head in additional sugar molecules shielded it from the immune system. It could not hook onto the ACE2 protein in human cells that leads to infection.
In immunised mice, production of antibodies against the unshielded core was dramatically boosted. They blocked SARS-CoV-2 and SARS-CoV-1 - which triggered the SARS outbreak in 2002...