Indian researchers claim to have developed a universal vaccination that is effective against all forms of the coronavirus that caused the once-in-a-century epidemic two years ago.
With new SARS-COV-2 virus variants causing recent outbreaks of the highly infectious disease, scientists at Kazi Nazrul University, Asansol, and the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, Bhubaneshwar, have developed a peptide vaccine that they claim could protect against any future coronavirus variants.
Their findings have been approved for publication in the Journal of Molecular Liquids, which focuses on basic features of the structure, interactions, and dynamic processes in simple, molecular, and complex liquids.
The researchers used immunoinformatic techniques to construct AbhiSCoVac, a multi-epitope multi-target chimeric peptide capable of generating resistance mechanisms against all six severe members of the family, hCoV-229E, hCoV-HKU1, hCoV-OC43, SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV, and SARS-CoV-2.
According to scientists Abhigyan Choudhury and Suprabhat Mukherjee from Kazi Nazrul University and Parth Sarthi Sen Gupta, Saroj Kumar Panda, and Malay Kumar Rana from IISER, Bhubaneshwar, the developed vaccine was found to be extremely stable, antigenic, and immunogenic.
According to Choudhary, the team of researchers designed the vaccine using computerized methods, and the next stage would include vaccine manufacture and will be backed by testing.
This is a one-of-a-kind vaccination. There is no other vaccine in the world that has been created to combat all of the Coronaviridae family infections at the same time; he told PTI.
He said that the researchers initially found many conserved areas in the spike protein of the six distinct viruses, which undergo relatively few mutations and hence vary only slightly during the pandemic.
Furthermore, the found areas of the protein are highly immunogenic, which means they may induce high amounts of immunological memory in the body, which is essential to guard against viruses, according to him.