| Nov 23, 2023
Spanish vaccine prototype now available to the WHO
Juan Garcia Arriaza and Mariano Esteban (CNB-CSIC)
First of all, we hope you are fine and you are all having a good autumn.
Once again, we would like to express our gratitude for your donations, which are truly necessary and very important to continue to meet our objectives of supporting the advancement of scientific knowledge.
Although the COVID pandemic is under control, “COVID-19 is here to stay”, according to WHO General-Director, and it still requires the best of humanity to collaborate in prevention, testing and treatment. We should make tools accessible to everyone, which is possible thanks to the hard work of institutions and researchers who have committed to providing equal access to their technology.
We are therefore pleased to share with you that the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) is making available its covid-19 vaccine prototype to developing countries through the World Health Organization (WHO). The agreement with the Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) is part of the COVID-19 Technology Access Pool (C-TAP), initiative created by the WHO in 2020 to facilitate affordable access to COVID-19 medicines by boosting their production. Supported by the United Nations and overseen by the WHO, it will enable clinical trial development to reach countries with fewer resources. How? By sharing their intellectual property (patents), knowledge and data (including site visits and training, direct assistance and consultation) with proven manufacturers through transparent, non-exclusive licenses that are willing to serve public health.
After the covid-19 serological tests, this is the second time that CSIC has provided a technology through the WHO's C-TAP initiative to facilitate equal access to covid-19 health technologies.
The vaccine prototype has been developed by the team of Mariano Esteban and Juan García Arriaza -Apadrina la Ciencia’s supporters- at the National Center for Biotechnology (CNB) of CSIC. We are very proud to have valuable scientists belonging to a Spanish public institution who put the results of their research at the service of public health at a global level.
The donated vaccine is based on the modified vaccinia virus Ankara MVA expressing SARS-CoV-2 spike glycoprotein. Studies carried out in various animal models demonstrate that the MVA-CoV2-S vaccine activates the immune system and protects against infection with the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus. On the one hand, the vaccine activates an immune response of specific CD4 T and CD8 T cells against SARS-CoV-2, which is robust, broad, high quality and durable. The vaccine prevents virus replication in both the lung and the brain, it also produces higher levels of antibodies, as well as neutralizing antibodies against the parental Wuhan variant or against different variants of the virus, which are also long-lasting.
This collaboration between a Spanish public institution and the WHO is a clear example of how public research and investment in developed countries leads to improvements in developing countries, which benefit from these achievements. It is, therefore, possible and necessary to address public health -and healthcare- with a global view, placing cooperation and solidarity at the center.
Thank you very much again for your commitment and support!
We hope to give you good news soon.