Austin, TX--No one likes to get a shot, kids least of all. Anxiety goes up, and tensions rise when kids know they are going to the doctor to get a shot. As the youngest of the population--children 11 and younger-- are next in line to receive the vaccine, researchers at the University of Texas at Austin reveal a new technology that could be a game changer. For kids and those who are vaccine-hesitant, a patch may make them turn out to receive the vaccination.
Would more people get the COVID vaccine if they didn't need a shot?
What if people didn't have to get a shot? What if they can get a patch instead? And most importantly, will a patch be as effective?
Researchers at the University of Texas at Austin have teamed up with researchers in Queensland, Australia, to test the effects of a COVID vaccine patch. Don't get excited yet that children will be able to escape the shot; one Queensland researcher says the team needs to finish clinical trials first, and that the patch may be available within two years in this video:
But, revolutionizing the shot process and taking the medical personnel out of the equation means that the COVID vaccine could be self-administered. When the patch has the correct dilution and doesn't require medical expertise, it can be given in the comfort of one's home, without going anywhere to get a shot.
Jason McLellan, associate professor at UT Austin said:
“As soon as we knew this was a coronavirus, we felt we had to jump at it,” McLellan said. “We knew exactly what mutations to put into this, because we’ve already shown these mutations work for a bunch of other coronaviruses.”
McLellan and his team created a model of the spike protein, then improved upon it, and the second-generation technology is what's used in the patch.
He went on, “It could also be a game changer, because it doesn’t require skilled health care workers to handle the syringe to perform the dilutions. Pretty much anybody could just put it on their arm and use it,” he said.
TheClinicalTrials Arena says:
“We designed this research to address the serious on-going need to improve the global vaccination efforts against Covid-19 and future pandemics. Based on our results, we believe that Vaxxas’ HD-MAP could offer a compelling solution that importantly could use less vaccine and potentially could be readily distributed without refrigeration for self-administration,” said University of Queensland research fellow David A. Muller, the leader of the study.
The vaccine patch can be stored at room temperature and for up to 30 days before being administered.
“Everyone in Texas, and America, can take pride in the fact that we can create things like this that will help so many people,” said Karan Bahl, a recent UT graduate.
Researchers and technicians from UT Austin and Queensland are working to raise funding to complete the clinical trials of the Vaxxas’ HD-MAP--working together and across the globe to reinforce that teamwork makes the dream work of COVID vaccination possible.
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