Partnership hopes to speed up production of key ingredient in potential COVID-19 vaccine

paherald.sk.ca
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A partnership between the University of Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization – International Vaccine Centre (VIDO-InterVac) and the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) is hoping to speed up the development and production of a key component that could be used for a potential COVID-19 vaccine.

In a press release issued Tuesday, the two groups announced they would work together to accelerate the development of a candidate COVID-19 antigen.

An antigen is a key component of a vaccine. VIDO-InterVac has found an antigen that will be used as the main part of a possible COVID-19 vaccine. VIDO-InterVac calls it a recombinant protein antigen. Recombinant means it's manufactured artificially as opposed to being naturally occurring, while the word protein used in this context is a description of the type of molecule the antigen is.

"An antigen is part of a vaccine. It's part of the virus being used to stimulate the immune system," explained VIDO-InterVac CEO and director Dr. Volker Gerdts.

"What a vaccine is, is part of a pathogen we use to stimulate an immune response. The basis of the vaccine is the antigen."

Vaccines work by providing the immune system with a sneak peek of the virus before it can become infected. This allows the immune system to prepare antibodies so that it's ready should it encounter the actual virus. The antigen is that normally triggers an immune response, causing your immune system to…
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