mRNA COVID-19 Vaccine – An Innovation In Vaccination

Coronavirus vaccine

COVID-19 vaccine by Moderna and Pfizer with their partners gives hope of a better future. The coronavirus pandemic has affected the lives of every individual one way or the other. Scientists and researchers are working day and night across the globe to formulate a cure. 

Moderna and Pfizer vaccines for coronavirus are advanced as they are mRNA vaccines. These vaccines are different from the traditional vaccine. According to the clinical trial results, both vaccines are effective against coronavirus. The respective companies have filed applications for emergency use approval from the Food and Drug Administration. 

ALSO READ: BioNTech-Pfizer’s COVID-19 Vaccine – A Hope For A Better Future

What’s New In Coronavirus Vaccines of Moderna And Pfizer?

Any vaccine either from Pfizer or Moderna or both, if received FDA approval for emergency usage, will be the first vaccine using mRNA technique for the formation of vaccine to achieve immunity. 

Traditional vaccines consist of killed or inactivated parts of the virus against which the vaccine is effective. However, both Moderna and Pfizer are conducting tests using their vaccines separately on various candidates. These vaccines differ from traditional vaccines, as in place of killed or inactivated virus particles, such vaccines contain mRNA that triggers the immune system to produce defensive antibodies. 

Further, mRNA is the messenger RNA that contains information about a specific protein and functions in the manufacturing of that protein. In advanced vaccines produced individually by both companies, initiation of the immune system and production of protective antibodies occur with the help of the mRNA technique. Messenger RNA also consists of genetic information essential for protein formation.

The action of mRNA COVID-19 Vaccine

The healthcare professional injects the vaccine into the upper arm. Later the muscle cells will decode the mRNA information and make viral protein directly in the body. Moreover, mRNA in the vaccines codes only for the critical-fragment of the viral protein. 

The use of mRNA is possibly safe, as it causes viral particle production within the body and gives a preview about the virus to the human immune system. Thus, enabling the body to produce protective antibodies that can neutralize the infectious coronavirus if the individual ever gets infected.

The mRNA vaccine is simpler than the traditional protein vaccine. The mRNA vaccine eliminates much of the manufacturing process. The reason is that in mRNA-vaccine, the human body uses instructions to produce the vaccine itself rather than formulating the inactive viral particles outside the body and injecting it later after stability and safety testing. Also, mRNA vaccine production occurs at a faster rate than traditional vaccine formation.

 Approval For One Of A Kind Vaccine

The Pfizer vaccine is 90% effective as per the preliminary findings. Meanwhile, Moderna also announced shortly after Pfizer that its vaccine is 94.5% effective as per the report of Phase 3 Clinical trials. Pfizer vaccine requires special storage conditions like it requires minus94 degree Celsius temperature for storage. Similarly, the Moderna vaccine does require specific storage conditions. But it is easily transportable as it does not require ultra-cold storage temperature. Moreover, the Moderna-COVID-19 vaccine is storable for 30 days, without compromising stability. Only if  a temperature between 36 and 46 degrees Fahrenheit is available for storage.

ALSO READ: COVID-19 Vaccine A Few Steps Away

According to Dr. Carlos del Rio, the mRNA vaccine will open a brand new platform for vaccine formation. Yet, no mRNA vaccine has received approval for public use. According to Paula Cannon, the mRNA vaccine tricks the immune system. Further, such vaccine formulation requires more investigation and experimentation to achieve the best safety and efficacy results.

 Moreover, more research will enable to make the mRNA vaccine effective for the majority of the population as the immune system varies from person-to-person. However, the mRNA vaccine for COVID-19 treatment is one of a kind up to know. Such a vaccine would also be the first mRNA vaccine to receive FDA approval for emergency use.

Adeena Tariq Lari
The author is a graduate of dental surgery from the Dow University Health Sciences, Karachi. She has an academic background in content writing as well as English literature, giving her an edge in the field. Adeena is always curious about physical and mental health. She is always passionate about research and delivering high-quality reliable content to users.