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What do you think about the discontinuation of some high-profile vaccine studies this week?
“I would say something like this happens relatively often. Looking at studies that could include as many as 50,000 people, I wouldn’t say it’s not too unique that you have the potential of an abandoned trial, due to some sort of complication or a condition that you need to investigate further.
“Is the scientific rigor in a question given the urgency of trying to get something out of it and the speed at which we go through this development process for some of the major vaccine candidates? By stopping your own trial – and not being forced to do so by (the U.S. Food and Drug Administration) – it is an indicator that you actually have good safety precautions. “
Is it likely an annual or one-time vaccine, or could there be several versions around the world?
“Many of these questions depend on the type of vaccine that comes up and whether it is more of a universal approach than something that is really only strict for (COVID-19)… It also depends on the type of vaccine you are developing. … It may not be for all age groups and could be for example only adults aged 18 to 40…
“Although we have different (vaccine) candidates, not all of them will ultimately achieve final approval. So having a few shots on the net is important for a number of reasons for many of these variables … We don’t really know the trajectory of what COVID-19 will look like, and what COVID-20 will look like … ”
Could treatment be the best option or is this pandemic ending with a vaccine?
“I have no doubt it will eventually end in a vaccine. I think the important part to understand here is that the development of a vaccine is not easy… One thing I can say is that it is unseen to see the development process working so quickly with this number of (vaccine) candidates. This is a truly unique time in history on a scientific level. ”