COVID-19, also known as the coronavirus disease 2019, is a highly contagious respiratory illness caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The disease first emerged in Wuhan, China in December 2019 and has since spread globally, leading to a worldwide pandemic.
Symptoms of COVID-19 can range from mild to severe and can include fever, cough, difficulty breathing, and loss of taste or smell. Some people may be asymptomatic or have only mild symptoms, while others may develop severe illness or even die, particularly those with underlying health conditions or weakened immune systems.
The virus primarily spreads through respiratory droplets that are produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks. It can also spread by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching one’s face.
To prevent the spread of COVID-19, the World Health Organization (WHO) and other health organizations recommend several measures such as wearing masks, washing hands frequently, practicing physical distancing, and getting vaccinated if a vaccine is available and appropriate for you.
As of now, several vaccines have been authorized for emergency use around the world, including vaccines developed by Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson, Sinovac, Bharat Biotech, Sinopharm, Gamaleya Research Institute and CureVac. These vaccines have undergone rigorous testing and have been shown to be safe and effective in preventing COVID-19.
The development of COVID-19 vaccines began shortly after the virus was identified in Wuhan, China in December 2019. Scientists and researchers around the world quickly began working to understand the virus and develop vaccines to protect against it.
One of the first steps in developing a vaccine is identifying the genetic sequence of the virus. This information was made available to the scientific community by Chinese researchers in January 2020, allowing other scientists to begin working on vaccine candidates.
Next, scientists began testing different vaccine candidates in animal models to determine which were safe and effective. Once promising candidates were identified, they were tested in small groups of human volunteers in Phase 1 clinical trials to assess their safety and the immune response they generated.
After the Phase 1 clinical trials, the most promising vaccine candidates moved on to Phase 2 and Phase 3 clinical trials, which involved giving the vaccine to larger groups of people and evaluating its safety and effectiveness.
The development process for COVID-19 vaccines was accelerated by several factors, including the use of cutting-edge technology such as messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines and the rapid sharing of information and resources among researchers and pharmaceutical companies.
In December 2020, Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine was authorized for emergency use by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and soon after Moderna, AstraZeneca, Johnson&Johnson, Sinovac, Bharat Biotech, Sinopharm, Gamaleya Research Institute and CureVac vaccines got authorized for emergency use or conditional use in several countries. This allowed for the rapid distribution of vaccines to the public and the beginning of the process of ending the pandemic.
Top 10 companies making covid 19 vaccines
- Pfizer and BioNTech: Pfizer is an American multinational pharmaceutical corporation and BioNTech is a German biotechnology company. The two companies developed the first COVID-19 vaccine to receive emergency use authorization from the FDA, which began distribution in December 2020.
- Moderna: Moderna is an American biotechnology company that developed the first mRNA-based COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccine was authorized for emergency use in December 2020.
- AstraZeneca: AstraZeneca is a British-Swedish multinational pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical company that developed a COVID-19 vaccine in partnership with the University of Oxford. The vaccine was authorized for use in the UK in December 2020.
- Johnson & Johnson: Johnson & Johnson is an American multinational corporation that developed a single-dose COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccine was authorized for emergency use in the US in February 2021.
- Sinovac: Sinovac is a Chinese biopharmaceutical company that developed a COVID-19 vaccine called CoronaVac. The vaccine has been authorized for use in several countries, including Brazil and Turkey.
- Bharat Biotech: Bharat Biotech is an Indian biotechnology company that developed a COVID-19 vaccine called Covaxin. The vaccine has been authorized for use in India.
- Sinopharm: Sinopharm is a Chinese state-owned pharmaceutical company that developed a COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccine has been authorized for use in several countries, including the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain.
- Gamaleya Research Institute: Gamaleya Research Institute is a Russian research institute that developed a COVID-19 vaccine called Sputnik V. The vaccine has been authorized for use in several countries, including Russia.
- CureVac: CureVac is a German biotechnology company that developed a COVID-19 vaccine based on messenger RNA technology. The vaccine has been authorized for use in some European countries.
- Sputnik V (Gamaleya Research Institute): Sputnik V is a COVID-19 vaccine developed by the Gamaleya Research Institute of Russia. The vaccine has been authorized for use in several countries, including Russia.
Pharmacareer team is a team of Experts from every department of Pharmaceutical industry having enriched experience. Experts have work experience of many multinational pharmaceutical industries worldwide.