News & Analysis: Vaccine search

WHO names Nigerian centre as African reference laboratory for genome research

“The African Centre of Excellence for the Genomics of Infectious Disease has been named one of the regional repository and bioinformatics centres by the WHO and Africa CDC to provide sequencing, data analysis and other technical support services to the countries where they are located as well as to neighbouring countries and countries in their sub-regions.”

via Premium Times (Nigeria)

Kemri becomes regional lab for COVID-19 (Kenya)

“Laboratories at the Kenya Medical Research Institute will now sequence the genomes of COVID-19 viruses collected from neighbouring countries in East Africa. The institute has joined a network of 12 specialised laboratories that will provide sequencing, data analysis and other technical support services to countries that have no capacity.”

via The Star (Kenya)

Secretary-General’s remarks to the First Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator Facilitation Council Meeting

“‘We must start immediately by massively expanding new and existing tools that can rapidly respond to new cases and provide vital treatment to suppress transmission and save lives, especially over the next 12 months. I know many pin their hopes on a vaccine — but let’s be clear: there is no panacea in a pandemic.'”

via UNECA

Nigerian scientists have identified seven lineages of SARS-CoV-2

“It is important to track lineages as they can be very useful for determining how a virus spreads through communities or populations.”

via Quartz Africa

COVID-19: WHO says 220m vaccine doses to be tested in Africa

“The distribution of vaccine doses will be based on nation inhabitant numbers and front-line health workers and the most vulnerable being given first-batch priority… The COVAX initiative seeks to contribute to the purchase and equitable distribution of 2 billion doses of approved vaccines by the end of 2021.

via Vanguard (Nigeria)

Africa CDC urges all nations to join WHO’s COVAX vaccine initiative

“The World Health Organisation said 76 rich nations were now committed to joining a global COVID-19 vaccine allocation plan that aims to help buy and fairly distribute the shots. The United States said it would not join the effort, called COVAX, due to President Donald Trump’s administration’s objection to WHO involvement.”

via Daily Maverick

We must prepare supply chains for future COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics

“As the world anxiously awaits the arrival of effective COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics, we need a new sense of urgency in preparing to protect these precious commodities.”

via World Bank

South Africa May Be First in Region to Produce COVID-19 Vaccine

“The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, a global organization funding vaccine development, is considering the Cape Town-based Biovac Institute as a fill-finish site, according to Helen Rees, the chair of the organization’s Scientific Advisory Board. The state-owned vaccine company is one of a few in the country that has the capacity to package doses into sterile dispensers if clinical trials are successful.”

via Bloomberg

Most of Africa will not have access to COVID-19 vaccines for up to a year after approval

“Researchers have been warning for months that production constraints and hoarding could limit COVID-19 vaccine supplies. For most of Africa, this may mean not having access to the vaccines for up to a year after approval.”

via Quartz Africa

Why medicines must be tested in the developing world

“Whatever ethical issues exist in rich countries are amplified in poor ones, where people may not know their rights, where regulatory authorities might be weaker and where there is often a history of exploitation and racism. Yet, such concerns notwithstanding, poor countries should be conducting more clinical trials not fewer.”

via Financial Times