(Mirror Daily, United States) Zika virus outbreaks call for an urgent solution to prove its efficiency, such as a vaccine. Although scientists and doctors do their best in order to develop a proper formula, we won’t be getting a Zika vaccine anytime soon. Tests on animals have already begun, but this doesn’t mean that the cure is done.
Scientists proceeded with testing experimental types of Zika vaccine on animals. The substances seem to work efficiently with monkeys, which were used as subjects. The next steps of the research are to prove that the vaccine is compatible with humans and to make sure they eliminate as many of the side effects as possible, if any. However, this is not where the scientists’ work ends.
According to specialists, the development of a vaccine is a complex process which requires time. Setting the formula is just one of the steps. After trials which show good results and no side effects, additional studies are conducted, in order to determine the details such as the age of patients at which the administration is recommended, the right dosage function of the age, and so on.
People who work in the field know that such a process can take at least ten years. The studies meant to develop a proper Zika vaccine are no exception. Scientists try to come up with a formula which should protect the human organism against the virus and to prevent effects of the disease, such as birth defects with babies.
Specialists identified two distinct strains of the Zika virus, namely the African one, and the Asian one, respectively. The good news is that they don’t have to create different vaccines for each of the strains, as one single formula can fight against both of them at the same time. After vaccination, the immune system should be able to assimilate the substances and later produce them on its own, in order to protect the organism against the virus.
Like any other vaccine, the Zika vaccine should be submitted to several medical trials. At least two such examinations are necessary. Usually, the first phase of the trial is based on results obtained from a small number of participants. The second phase requires more volunteers willing to try the medical product. Specialists closely monitor their condition.
The steps presented above stand as just a part of the hard work that scientists have to carry out. The complex process is applied to all types of vaccines. However, the Zika vaccine is a much more challenging task, as there are many factors which must be taken into account.
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