Guest Videos: Vaccines and Viruses


What exactly are they doing about this pandemic? Those of us under lockdown would like to know, but it isn’t easy to find details of the global fight against COVID-19, let alone understand them

When the president announced yesterday that they hope to get a vaccine — the one thing that can quickly get us back to normal — ready by the end of the year, I decided to look around a little.

First, I recalled reading somewhere that the common cold is caused by a coronavirus (this is a whole family: only one member of it, SARS-CoV-2, is behind the COVID-19 pandemic, as far as we know).

It turns out that’s not the case. Coronaviruses are only one of multiple virus family perpetrators of the cold.

Let’s count our blessings that this isn’t true of COVID-19!

What about all that talk about vaccines for the common cold, though?



Right.

There’s definitely a reason to do this now. And here is an overview by the World Economic Forum on the sort of effort that’s involved.



As for herd immunity, it apparently works in combination with vaccination:



We have herd immunity to colds, I suppose, because so many of us get one and develop natural immunity. But with COVID-19, the human cost of going this route is too high.

So, what are are these nasty little things called viruses?



Featured image: Jernej Furman, CC BY 2.0



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