The coordinator of the CIIS's CatolicaMed platform published by invitation in the International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung

Professor Paulo Bettencourt - Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Medicine of the Catholic University of Portugal, Principal Investigator in Immunology and Vaccinology and Coordinator of the CIIS's CatolicaMed platform) - published an editorial by invitation in the prestigious journal International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease (IJTLD). In this informative article, the author describes the fundamental questions currently being studied by the scientific community to improve BCG´s efficacy, and elaborates on the current knowledge about the potential usage of this vaccine to protect against COVID-19. 

Professor Paulo Bettencourt explains that Tuberculosis (TB) is the largest cause of death by an infectious disease worldwide. Given the emergence of multi-drug and extensively-drug resistant strains, as well as co-infection with HIV, TB is a global threat. The currently available vaccine is a live attenuated form of the bacillus causing bovine TB, the bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG), and has variable efficacy throughout the world. This is the oldest approved vaccine in the world, currently in use, and celebrates the 100th anniversary of the first administration on 18th July 2021.  In parallel, in the midst of a COVID-19 pandemics, the development of several vaccines against COVID-19 occurred in less than one year, in an unprecedented way. The race for vaccine production, raised issues about safety of vaccines to inequality of vaccine distribution. BCG has variable efficacy throughout the world, and likewise, SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern have emerged threatening the efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines. 

This curious parallel between both vaccines has one feature in common: both must improve and research and development of more efficacious vaccines must not stop.  



Categorias: Faculdade de Medicina Research

Mon, 19/07/2021