It’s the Easter time for Christians, the followers of Jesus, though without the usual fanfare and celebrations. Jesus who came from Nazareth of Galilee, now part of modern Israel. The place has great significance for Christians, as Jesus lived 30 years there, did 25 out of 33 miracles, called his disciples and even appeared to his disciples in a mount of Galilee. Jesus is adored as the saviour by the billions of his followers.
It could prove to be more than just a coincidence, if the current efforts of Israel Government reaches the logical end to come out with a vaccine to save billions from the deadly virus of corona. Because, it is being developed at the Galilee Research Institute.
Reports said that Israeli scientists are in the advanced stages developing a vaccine and it could be ready within a few weeks. “Congratulations to MIGAL [The Galilee Research Institute] on this exciting breakthrough,” Akunis said. “I am confident there will be further rapid progress, enabling us to provide a needed response to the grave global COVID-19 threat,” according to a statement by Israeli Science and Technology Minister Ofir Akunis.
In fact, the institute has been actively working for the last four years to develop a vaccine against infectious bronchitis virus (IBV), which causes a bronchial disease affecting poultry. This was proven in preclinical trials carried out at the Veterinary Institute. But with the world under Covid, the scientists found something interesting in this vaccine that can also be effective against corona virus.
The original plan was to have vaccine for this poultry virus. It helped the body to form antibodies against the virus as shown in the preclinical trials. It cam rather like a luck. So the scientists now chose coronavirus as a model for our system just as a proof of concept for new technology.
But after scientists sequenced the DNA of the novel, the MIGAL researchers examined it and found that the poultry coronavirus has high genetic similarity to the human one, and that it uses the same infection mechanism, which increases the likelihood of achieving an effective human vaccine in a very short period of time, scientists now noted.
“All we need to do is adjust the system to the new sequence. We are in the middle of this process, and hopefully in a few weeks we will have the vaccine in our hands. Yes, in a few weeks, if it all works, we would have a vaccine to prevent coronavirus,’’ they said.
MIGAL would be responsible for developing the new vaccine, but it would then have to go through a regulatory process, including clinical trials and large-scale production.
Akunis said he has instructed his ministry’s director-general to fast-track all approval processes with the goal of bringing the human vaccine to market as quickly as possible.
“Given the urgent global need for a human coronavirus vaccine, we are doing everything we can to accelerate development,” MIGAL CEO David Zigdon said. The vaccine could “achieve safety approval in 90 days,” he said.
It will be an oral vaccine, making it particularly accessible to the general public, Zigdon said.