Local researchers have encouraging news for vaccine race

Coronavirus

SAN DIEGO — New research from the La Jolla Institute of Immunology is answering some critical questions about COVID-19 — and the results are cautiously optimistic.

“Everybody wants to know, ‘Do people develop immunity? How hard is it going to be to develop a vaccine?'” said Dr. Shane Crotty, who works for the institute.

The answers — according to these world leaders in their field — have turned up better than they previously thought.

“It looks like good news: that most people make a robust immune response. Most people probably do develop immunity. And that type of immune response, that we measured, is consistent with the types of things that people are trying to develop with these many different vaccine candidates,” Dr. Crotty explained.

Researchers also found that some people who have been exposed to four types of common colds showed signs of “cross-immunity protections” against the virus, meaning many of our bodies may already be doing some of the work for us.

“You know the virus has been fought successfully … This is the kind of response we want see when we induce a vaccine,” said Dr. Alessandro Sette, who also works for the institute.

This research will be handed to all 90 vaccine companies racing to finish a successful vaccination to assist in defeating the virus. The research suggests a light at the end of the tunnel — researchers say defeating this disease will be less complicated than originally feared.

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