After months of long waiting, the corona virus vaccine has finally started coming in and distribution has started in countries like USA and United Kingdom (UK).
The wait may have proved to be long for people in the midst of an epidemic, but vaccine manufacture is a highly complex process and for the first time a disease vaccine has arrived within a year.
Let us then know about this complex process related to vaccine.
What are vaccines made from?
Different techniques are being used to make the vaccine. Vaccination through inactivated or living viruses is a traditional method, while many other methods have come along with the advancement of science.
In this, making the vaccine by making genetic changes to other viruses and making vaccines through artificial RNA (mRNA) are most important.
In addition, vaccines also contain other ingredients that help to make them safe, effective and stable and protected.
What happens after vaccine production?
Each vaccine undergoes extensive and rigorous testing and inspection after manufacture. In this process they are first tested on lab and then on animals and this is called pre-clinical trial.
In this phase it is seen whether the vaccine is causing immune response and whether it is safe for trials on humans. If it meets both these parameters, then it is tested on humans.
What happens in a human trial?
Any vaccine is trialed on humans in three stages and is called a clinical trial.
In the first phase, very few people are tested on the vaccine and it is seen how safe it is and whether the immune response is occurring.
In the second phase, a little more people are tested and the results of the first phase are further strengthened.
The most important human trial in the third phase
The third phase of the human trial is the most important and the vaccine is tested on thousands of people. In this stage it is known how effective the vaccine is in preventing infection and there is no problem in it.
The third phase of the trial usually lasts for years, but in relation to the corona vaccine, they were completed within a year.
Regulatory approvals are obtained only after the third phase and distribution begins.
Packing and shipping
How are vaccines packaged and transported?
After manufacture in large quantities, the vaccine doses are stored in glass vials and packed well. The packing is done in such a way that the harsh temperature and traffic has no effect on it.
These are then transported in special containers to the destination country, where they are transported from the airport to cold storage via freezers. They are eventually transported to the distribution center in ice-boxes.
Cold chain is made for shipping and storage
Temperature is taken care of during shipping and a cold chain is created for this. Most vaccines are stored at 2–8 ° C and at higher or lower temperatures, the vaccines may be less effective or unsafe.