COVID-19 vaccine: How was it developed so fast? (2023)

Since the beginning of the pandemic, healthcare workers have administered billions of COVID-19 vaccine doses. In this Special Feature, we speak with medical experts about how scientists made coronavirus vaccines so rapidly without compromising safety.

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All data and statistics are based on publicly available data at the time of publication. Some information may be out of date. Visit our coronavirus hub for the most recent information on the COVID-19 pandemic.

SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, was first identified in December 2019. By December 11, 2020, the Pfizer vaccine became the first to receive emergency use authorization from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Creating a vaccine in under 1 year is no small feat. While the coronavirus pandemic made a new normal of mask-wearing and physical distancing, it also spurred global cooperation for vaccine research and distribution.

However, a vaccine is only effective if people are willing to receive it. With rapid research development, some may be concerned that the vaccine was rushed, and with these concerns comes vaccine hesitancy.

A study that appeared in Nature Medicine in October 2020 surveyed 19 countries to investigate the acceptance of COVID-19 vaccines. The researchers found that only 71.5% of the respondents would consider taking a COVID-19 vaccine and that only 48.1% would take it if their employer recommended it.

By October 2021, healthcare workers had delivered more than 7 billion doses of the COVID-19 vaccine globally. However, vaccine hesitancy remains.

According to an ongoing Kaiser Family Foundation survey, 16% of respondents will “definitely not” get the vaccine.

Considering that the fastest vaccine — the mumps vaccine, which is now part of the MMR vaccine — took 4 years to develop, it is natural to have some apprehension over the safety and effectiveness of a new vaccine.

Dr. Sam Sun is a chief resident at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston and the director of the inDemic Foundation, a nonprofit organization that provides information about COVID-19.

He told Medical News Today that transparency throughout the vaccine process will be key to debunking misinformation and building the public’s trust.

For more advice on COVID-19 prevention and treatment, visit our coronavirus hub.

(Video) COVID-19: How a vaccine was developed so quickly

Researchers were not starting from scratch when they learned about SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

SARS-CoV-2 is a member of the coronavirus family. According to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, there are hundreds of coronaviruses. These include four that can cause the common cold, as well as the coronaviruses that sparked the SARS, or severe acute respiratory syndrome, epidemic in 2002 and the emergence of MERS, or Middle East respiratory syndrome, in 2012.

Dr. Eric J. Yager, an associate professor of microbiology at Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences in Albany, NY, told MNT that scientists have been studying coronaviruses for more than 50 years. This meant that scientists had existing data on the structure, genome, and life cycle of this type of virus.

Dr. Yager explained, “Research on these viruses established the importance of the viral spike (S) protein in viral attachment, fusion, and entry, and [it] identified the S proteins as a target for the development of antibody therapies and vaccines.” He continued:

“Early efforts by scientists at Oxford University to create an adenovirus-based vaccine against MERS provided the necessary experimental experience and groundwork to develop an adenovirus vaccine for COVID-19.”

Under normal circumstances, making a vaccine can take up to 10–15 years. This is because of the complexity of vaccine development.

Dr. Michael Parry, the chair of infectious diseases at Stamford Health in Stamford, CT, told MNT that vaccines train our immune system to remember an infectious agent without us having to contract it.

“Traditionally, they have contained weakened or inactivated parts of a particular virus (antigen) to trigger an immune response within the body. These vaccines will prompt the immune system to respond, much as it would have on its first reaction to the actual pathogen.”

However, amid a global pandemic, time was a luxury the world could not afford. Researchers quickly mobilized to share their coronavirus data with other scientists.

(Video) How the COVID-19 vaccines were created so quickly - Kaitlyn Sadtler and Elizabeth Wayne

Dr. Yager said that thanks to advances in genomic sequencing, researchers successfully uncovered the viral sequence of SARS-CoV-2 in January 2020 — roughly 10 days after the first reported pneumonia cases in Wuhan, China. The ability to fast-track research and clinical trials was a direct result of this worldwide cooperation.

Vaccine research is costly. In 2018, a study in The Lancet Global Health estimated the cost of early development and initial clinical safety trials for a typical vaccine to be in the range of $31–68 million. Large scale trials to determine the efficacy of a vaccine candidate would add to these figures.

In an accelerated timetable with a new coronavirus, this cost might be higher. For this reason, funding from sources ranging from the government to the private sector was critical in making COVID-19 vaccines.

In the United States, Operation Warp Speed (OWS) partnered with multiple institutions, including the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), to develop, manufacture, and distribute 300 million doses by early 2021.

“By providing resources and assuming the financial risk, OWS allows companies to produce and stockpile vaccine doses even before the company knows if the vaccine is going to work,” said Dr. Yager.

“Also, by investing in multiple companies and vaccine platforms at once, OWS increased the odds of having a vaccine, or vaccines, available by the beginning of 2021,” he added.

The European Commission has also funded several vaccine candidates and worked with others in pledging $8 billion for COVID-19 research.

The United Kingdom government’s Vaccine Taskforce has also been a significant contributor to a wide variety of vaccine research. Recipients of this funding helped develop the AstraZeneca vaccine. The designers of this vaccine were the first to publish peer reviewed efficacy results from phase 3 trials.

The Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines were the first mRNA vaccines that humans received outside of clinical trials.

Dr. Thomas Kenyon, chief health officer at Project HOPE and former director of the CDC Center for Global Health, told MNT that mRNA technology is something the NIH had been working on for some time.

Dr. Kenyon explained that mRNA vaccines deliver the coronavirus S protein’s genetic material. Our own cells then use the information stored in the mRNA to make the S proteins. The immune system is then “trained” to recognize these spikes, preparing it for a future attack.

(Video) Was the COVID-19 vaccine made too quickly?

“When challenged with the real virus, your immune system attacks the real surface protein of the virus and inactivates it through the immune system capabilities,” Dr. Kenyon told MNT.

According to Dr. Kenyon, misinformation surrounding mRNA vaccines stems from a concern that the vaccine infects people with the virus.

“Nobody is getting infected with a COVID-19 vaccine. It is only the surface protein that would be replicated because we have given you the messenger RNA. It is not the entire virus,” he explained.

One misconception is that an mRNA vaccine would not be useful when the virus mutates.

A July 2020 study that appears in Frontiers in Microbiology confirms that the virus mutates. After analyzing 48,635 samples of SARS-CoV-2, the researchers identified an average of 7.23 mutations per sample.

While mutations are a certainty, Dr. Sun said that this should not be a cause for alarm.

“There has been an estimated 250,000 variants or strains of SARS-CoV-2 sequenced in the lab. For the most part, the virus has a low mutation rate compared to the mutation rate of the influenza virus,” Dr. Sun explained. “The spike protein is important for the ability of the virus to infect humans’ cells. I think it would not mutate enough for the vaccines to be ineffective.”

Another concern is whether natural immunity would be more effective than a vaccine. However, a CDC study from November 2021 found that COVID-19 mRNA vaccines are about five times more effective in preventing hospitalization than a previous infection.

“Natural immunity is not better than vaccine-acquired immunity. These vaccines have the potential to provide you with protective immunity without the risks associated with infection,” Dr. Yager told MNT.

In the U.S., the FDA meticulously reviews the data from each clinical trial phase before granting approval or, in the case of public health emergencies, emergency use authorization.

Dr. Kenyon said that before any clinical trial can start, a data monitoring and safety board must approve a study protocol.

(Video) 5. How was the COVID-19 vaccine developed so quickly?

A phase 1 trial focuses on the safety of the vaccine candidate. The researchers give escalating doses of the vaccine to healthy volunteers to determine side effects and tolerability.

Phase 2 trials expand their recruitment and may include participants with health conditions such as obesity, cancer, and diabetes. There is also active recruitment for participants of various demographics. The trial continues to test the safety of the vaccine and looks at the drug’s initial efficacy and how it affects the immune system.

Phase 3 trials recruit thousands of participants to measure the efficacy of the vaccine in preventing disease.

Clinical trials may combine their phases, which, according to Dr. Yager, is a common practice that is still held to the same ethical, scientific, and statistical standards as when each phase takes place separately. He explained:

“One potential benefit of combined trials, particularly in phase 2/3, is that since the vaccine is being evaluated in subgroups of individuals, results from the study expedite the identification of patient factors that impact vaccine safety or efficacy.”

Dr. Yager said that a major factor behind the rapid completion of clinical trials was a high interest in volunteers for vaccine studies. This helped enrollment goals for reaching thousands of people relatively quickly.

Another factor was the increased number of testing sites to facilitate enrollment and collect large amounts of data.

Even after emergency use authorization has been granted, Dr. Kenyon said that the scientists will continue to collect safety data, as they will follow the participants for up to 2 years. This adds another layer of reassurance as a person shifts from a trial to a real-life setting.

“The trial is tens of thousands of participants, but for the vaccine program, you are getting into the millions. While unlikely, it may uncover any undetected toxicities that were not picked up by the trial.”

The CDC will monitor safety after vaccination for acute care and long-term care facilities through the National Healthcare Safety Network. For the general population, there is a smartphone application called V-safe.

“It is a smartphone-based system where you will be contacted actively by the CDC to see how you are doing after being vaccinated and [it will], therefore, pick up any adverse events that were not picked up in the trials,” Dr. Kenyon explained.

MNT takeaways

(Video) How was the COVID-19 vaccine developed so quickly?

The pandemic has ushered in a new era of vaccine research. The combination of the global collaboration of scientists and the development of mRNA vaccines is akin to the “landing-on-the-moon moment,” according to Dr. Yager.

As COVID-19 cases continue to surge in many areas of the world, the challenge for widespread vaccine rollout will lie in its uptake by the public.

For live updates on the latest developments regarding the novel coronavirus and COVID-19, click here.

FAQs

How long does it usually take to develop a vaccine? ›

A typical vaccine development timeline takes 5 to 10 years, and sometimes longer, to assess whether the vaccine is safe and efficacious in clinical trials, complete the regulatory approval processes, and manufacture sufficient quantity of vaccine doses for widespread distribution.

Why are mRNA vaccines faster? ›

And by getting the human body to produce the viral proteins itself, mRNA vaccines cut out some of the manufacturing process and should be easier and quicker to produce than traditional vaccines.

Which country first developed Covid vaccine? ›

The Wuhan Institute, part of the state-owned Chinese company Sinopharm, launched phase 3 trials for its vaccine in July 2020 in the UAE, and in Peru and Morocco in August 2020. On 25 February 2021, China announced the approval of the Wuhan vaccine for general use.

What is the name of Covid-19 vaccine developed by? ›

COVAXIN®, India's indigenous COVID-19 vaccine by Bharat Biotech is developed in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) - National Institute of Virology (NIV).

Which vaccine was developed the fastest? ›

For Maurice Hilleman, the invention of the mumps vaccine combined good science and good parenting. Until COVID-19 vaccines, it would be the fastest vaccine development in history.

How long was the Covid vaccine trial? ›

A mere 13 months after trial initiation, the vaccine became the first FDA approved COVID-19 vaccine on August 23, 2021.

How long did it take to develop the polio vaccine? ›

Development of the Salk vaccine. Researchers began working on a polio vaccine in the 1930s, but early attempts were unsuccessful. An effective vaccine didn't come around until 1953, when Jonas Salk introduced his inactivated polio vaccine (IPV).

How long did it take to create the smallpox vaccine? ›

Smallpox. The eradication of smallpox through a vaccine is seen as one of the biggest achievements in public health history — but it took several centuries to get there.

When was mRNA technology first used? ›

mRNA technology has been in development since the 1960s, but it was proven responsive when SARS-CoV-2 hit the world. Its success in combatting COVID-19 has resulted in renewed interest in developing the technology for other diseases.

Who invented vaccine? ›

Edward Jenner is considered the founder of vaccinology in the West in 1796, after he inoculated a 13 year-old-boy with vaccinia virus (cowpox), and demonstrated immunity to smallpox. In 1798, the first smallpox vaccine was developed.

When was the first vaccine invented? ›

We begin our history of vaccines and immunization with the story of Edward Jenner, a country doctor living in Berkeley (Gloucestershire), England, who in 1796 performed the world's first vaccination. Taking pus from a cowpox lesion on a milkmaid's hand, Jenner inoculated an eight-year-old boy, James Phipps.

Who made the vaccine? ›

Edward Jenner inoculating 9-year-old James Phipps with cowpox. Eight decades after Jenner published his findings, Louis Pasteur developed the first live attenuated bacterial vaccine.

Which Covid vaccine is the safest? ›

The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are strongly recommended as safe and effective at preventing serious illness or death from COVID-19.

What was the first Covid vaccine? ›

FDA approved the first COVID-19 vaccine, Comirnaty (COVID-19 Vaccine, mRNA), which was previously known as Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine, for the prevention of COVID-19 disease in individuals 16 years of age and older.

When did Covid vaccines start? ›

Millions of COVID-19 vaccines have been given since December 2020. Researchers at Mayo Clinic and other medical centers continue to study more vaccines that prevent COVID-19.

How are vaccines produced? ›

Vaccines are complex biological products with lengthy manufacturing and control processes. The quality controls represent up to 70% of the full manufacturing duration. Successful manufacturing of high-quality vaccines requires international standardization of starting materials, production and quality control […]

When was the Pfizer Covid vaccine created? ›

On March 11, 2020 the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic1. Just six days later, on March 17, Pfizer signed a letter of intent with BioNTech to co-develop a potential COVID-19 vaccine2. In those early days, it was unclear how this new virus was transmitted, or how long it would last.

Which vaccine uses a killed form of the germ? ›

Inactivated vaccines use the killed version of the germ that causes a disease.

How long does natural immunity last? ›

How long does natural immunity last after a COVID-19 infection? Early on, researchers thought that natural immunity to COVID-19 only lasted for about 2 to 3 months before fading. As the pandemic continued, experts started finding evidence that natural immunity could last for longer after infection.

How long does Covid last? ›

Most people who test positive with any variant of COVID-19 typically experience some symptoms for a couple weeks. People who have long COVID-19 symptoms can experience health problems for four or more weeks after first being infected, according to the CDC.

How does a vaccine work? ›

Vaccines contain a harmless form of the bacteria or virus that causes the disease you are being immunised against. The bacteria or virus will be killed, greatly weakened, or broken down into small parts before use in the vaccine so that they can trigger an immune response without making you sick.

How long was the polio vaccine tested before it was given to the public? ›

The results were tracked by volunteers using pencils and paper. And it lasted just one year, with officials hopeful at the outset that they would be able to begin giving the vaccine to children within weeks of the final results.

How much testing was done on the polio vaccine? ›

Jonas Salk was seen as a godsend, and in 1954, frantic parents volunteered more than 1.8 million children to serve as test subjects in a yearlong field trial of the vaccine's effectiveness. Of those kids, 600,000 would be randomly injected with three doses of the experimental polio vaccine or a placebo.

What year did they stop giving the polio vaccine? ›

The oral poliovirus vaccine (OPV) is a weakened live vaccine that is still used in many parts of the world, but hasn't been used in the United States since 2000.

How was the first vaccine made? ›

In the beginning

Vaccine development started more than two centuries ago when English doctor Edward Jenner treated a young boy by injecting him with pus from cowpox blisters found on a milkmaid's hands. Cowpox contains the vaccinia virus, which causes smallpox. The injection immunized the boy against smallpox.

What are the most successful vaccines in history? ›

Here are five of the most important vaccines ever developed:
  • The smallpox vaccine. Smallpox was the first successful vaccine, developed in 1796 by Edward Jenner. ...
  • The polio vaccine. ...
  • The MMR vaccine. ...
  • The Tdap vaccine. ...
  • The HPV vaccine. ...
  • Insider's takeaway.
28 Nov 2020

How long did it take to develop the tetanus vaccine? ›

Tetanus antiserum was developed in 1890, with its protective effects lasting a few weeks. The tetanus toxoid vaccine was developed in 1924, and came into common use for soldiers in World War II. Its use resulted in a 95% decrease in the rate of tetanus.
...
Tetanus vaccine.
Vaccine description
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11 more rows

Who discovered mRNA? ›

Meet the Two Penn Researchers Behind mRNA Science

Katalin Karikó, PhD, and Drew Weissman, MD, PhD, invented the messenger mRNA technology that serves as the foundation of the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines.

What is the difference between mRNA vaccines and traditional vaccines? ›

How do COVID-19 messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines work? Traditional vaccines put a weakened or inactivated germ into our bodies. Messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines, like the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines, teach cells how to make a protein that triggers an immune response if someone gets infected.

How do you go from DNA to mRNA? ›

During transcription, the DNA of a gene serves as a template for complementary base-pairing, and an enzyme called RNA polymerase II catalyzes the formation of a pre-mRNA molecule, which is then processed to form mature mRNA (Figure 1).

What is vaccine Short answer? ›

What is vaccination? Vaccination is a simple, safe, and effective way of protecting you against harmful diseases, before you come into contact with them. It uses your body's natural defenses to build resistance to specific infections and makes your immune system stronger.

Why are vaccines important? ›

Vaccines work by teaching the body's immune system to recognize and defend against harmful viruses or bacteria before getting an infection, and reduce the chance of getting certain infectious diseases.

What is vaccination in biology? ›

Vaccination: The act of introducing a vaccine into the body to produce protection from a specific disease. Immunization: A process by which a person becomes protected against a disease through vaccination. This term is often used interchangeably with vaccination or inoculation.

Why was the first vaccine created? ›

The smallpox vaccine is the first vaccine to be developed against a contagious disease. In 1796, the British doctor Edward Jenner demonstrated that an infection with the relatively mild cowpox virus conferred immunity against the deadly smallpox virus.

What's the vaccine that leaves a scar? ›

A smallpox vaccine scar is a distinctive mark that smallpox vaccination leaves behind. The scar may be round or oblong, and it may appear deeper than the surrounding skin.

What is the first vaccine for baby? ›

Baby's first vaccine. Hepatitis B is the first vaccine most babies receive. It is given within 24 hours of birth. Your baby will get a second dose of hepatitis B vaccine when they are 1 month to 2 months old and the third dose when they are 6 months to 18 months old.

What are 4 types of vaccines? ›

The main types of vaccines that act in different ways are: Live-attenuated vaccines. Inactivated vaccines. Subunit, recombinant, conjugate, and polysaccharide vaccines.

What does the mRNA do? ›

Messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines teach our cells how to make a protein that will trigger an immune response inside our bodies.

What vaccines are made with mRNA? ›

  • The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, BNT162b2, uses mRNA to create the receptor binding domain of the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2 (Walsh, 2020). ...
  • The Moderna vaccine, mRNA-1273, uses mRNA to create the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein stabilized in its prefusion conformation (Jackson, 2020).
20 Sept 2022

Is Pfizer or Moderna better? ›

Pfizer: Is There a “Best” mRNA Vaccine? Both of the mRNA vaccines available in the US are highly effective against severe COVID-19, but recent studies suggest that Moderna's elicits a stronger immune response and might be better at preventing breakthrough infections.

Is Covid vaccine FDA approved? ›

With today's authorization, the FDA has also revised the EUA of the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine and the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine to remove the use of the monovalent Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines for booster administration for individuals 18 years of age and older and 12 years of age and older, ...

Which Covid vaccine is best for over 65? ›

Getting vaccinated prevents severe illness, hospitalizations and death. People 65 and older who received both doses of either Pfizer or Moderna vaccines showed a 94% reduced risk of COVID-19 related hospitalization.

Who developed first Covid vaccine? ›

Bharat Biotech has successfully developed COVAXIN™, India's 1st vaccine candidate for COVID-19, in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) - National Institute of Virology (NIV). The SARS-CoV-2 strain was isolated in NIV, Pune and transferred to Bharat Biotech.

Which country first developed Covid vaccine? ›

The Wuhan Institute, part of the state-owned Chinese company Sinopharm, launched phase 3 trials for its vaccine in July 2020 in the UAE, and in Peru and Morocco in August 2020. On 25 February 2021, China announced the approval of the Wuhan vaccine for general use.

Can you get Covid twice? ›

Reinfection with the virus that causes COVID-19 means a person was infected, recovered, and then later became infected again. After recovering from COVID-19, most individuals will have some protection from repeat infections. However, reinfections do occur after COVID-19.

How long does it take to develop a vaccine? ›

A typical vaccine development timeline takes 5 to 10 years, and sometimes longer, to assess whether the vaccine is safe and efficacious in clinical trials, complete the regulatory approval processes, and manufacture sufficient quantity of vaccine doses for widespread distribution.

What does Covid stand for? ›

COVID-19 – Coronavirus Disease 2019. DNA – deoxyribonucleic acid. ICU – intensive care unit.

Why Covid vaccination is important? ›

The introduction of COVID-19 vaccine is a major step towards reducing the spread of the pandemic and further reducing the associated disease and deaths. The COVID-19 vaccine introduction is the world's largest vaccination drive and roll out requires planning at various levels.

How long did it take to create the polio vaccine? ›

Development of the Salk vaccine. Researchers began working on a polio vaccine in the 1930s, but early attempts were unsuccessful. An effective vaccine didn't come around until 1953, when Jonas Salk introduced his inactivated polio vaccine (IPV).

How long did it take to make the measles vaccine? ›

Hilleman was credited with creating the first measles and mumps vaccine, and began researching ways to incorporate a system of immunity for each virus. Using his previous research and a rubella vaccine developed by Stanley Plotkin in 1969, he created the first successful MMR vaccine in just two years.

How are vaccines produced? ›

Vaccines are complex biological products with lengthy manufacturing and control processes. The quality controls represent up to 70% of the full manufacturing duration. Successful manufacturing of high-quality vaccines requires international standardization of starting materials, production and quality control […]

When did the Covid vaccines come out? ›

After receiving U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval on August 23, 2021, the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for people ages 16 years and older began to be marketed under the COMIRNATY brand name. The vaccine was also FDA approved for pre-teens and teens ages 12–15 on July 8, 2022.

How long was the polio vaccine tested before it was given to the public? ›

The results were tracked by volunteers using pencils and paper. And it lasted just one year, with officials hopeful at the outset that they would be able to begin giving the vaccine to children within weeks of the final results.

How much testing was done on the polio vaccine? ›

Jonas Salk was seen as a godsend, and in 1954, frantic parents volunteered more than 1.8 million children to serve as test subjects in a yearlong field trial of the vaccine's effectiveness. Of those kids, 600,000 would be randomly injected with three doses of the experimental polio vaccine or a placebo.

Who invented vaccination? ›

We begin our history of vaccines and immunization with the story of Edward Jenner, a country doctor living in Berkeley (Gloucestershire), England, who in 1796 performed the world's first vaccination. Taking pus from a cowpox lesion on a milkmaid's hand, Jenner inoculated an eight-year-old boy, James Phipps.

How long did it take to develop the HPV vaccine? ›

After seven years of design and testing, the first human trials for the vaccine, named Gardasil, were completed. This vaccine prevented four high-risk HPV types (HPV 6, 11, 16, and 18), which would target over 70% of cervical cancer cases.

What vaccine left a scar on your arm? ›

Many foreign-born persons have received the bacille Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccine for TB disease. This vaccine is administered at birth in many countries outside of the U.S. to prevent childhood tuberculous meningitis and miliary disease. BCG leaves a scar like the smallpox vaccine.

How many died from measles before vaccine? ›

Pre-vaccine era

In the first decade of reporting, an average of 6,000 measles-related deaths were reported each year. In the decade before 1963 when a vaccine became available, nearly all children got measles by the time they were 15 years of age.

How was the first vaccine made? ›

In the beginning

Vaccine development started more than two centuries ago when English doctor Edward Jenner treated a young boy by injecting him with pus from cowpox blisters found on a milkmaid's hands. Cowpox contains the vaccinia virus, which causes smallpox. The injection immunized the boy against smallpox.

Which is killed vaccine? ›

Killed (inactivated) vaccines are made from a protein or other small pieces taken from a virus or bacteria. The whooping cough (pertussis) vaccine is an example. Toxoid vaccines contain a toxin or chemical made by the bacteria or virus.

How are viruses killed for vaccines? ›

Inactivated Vaccines: For these vaccines, the specific virus or bacteria is killed with heat or chemicals, and its dead cells are introduced into the body. Even though the pathogen is dead, the immune system can still learn from its antigens how to fight live versions of it in the future.

Which Covid vaccine is the safest? ›

The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are strongly recommended as safe and effective at preventing serious illness or death from COVID-19.

Can you get Covid twice? ›

Reinfection with the virus that causes COVID-19 means a person was infected, recovered, and then later became infected again. After recovering from COVID-19, most individuals will have some protection from repeat infections. However, reinfections do occur after COVID-19.

What was the first vaccine for Covid? ›

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration authorized the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine on Friday last week, citing its 95% effectiveness at preventing symptomatic Covid-19 in a large clinical trial.

Videos

1. How Did the COVID-19 Vaccine Happen So Fast?
(NowThis News)
2. How the world rapidly developed a Covid-19 vaccine
(CNBC Television)
3. Inside the Lab That Invented the COVID-19 Vaccine
(Be Smart)
4. COVID-19 Vaccines 101: How was the vaccine developed so quickly?
(3D4Medical From Elsevier)
5. VERIFY: How can the COVID-19 vaccine be safe when it was developed so quickly?
(WUSA9)
6. How were Pfizer and Moderna able to develop a COVID-19 vaccine so quickly?
(Good Morning America)
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