Scientists around the world are working on a total of 20 vaccines and 30 possible drugs against covid-19, some of which are already in the final testing phase before final approval.
According to data collected by the International Federation of the Pharmaceutical Industry (Ifpma) – which represents research-based pharmaceutical companies and associations from around the world -, cited by the Spanish agency EFE, there are already 20 vaccines under development worldwide to combat the new coronavirus, which causes covid-19 disease.
On the other hand, laboratories have identified about 30 possible drugs, of which 14 are in the initial phase of the investigation, four in phase I of development, three in phase II and one started phase III trials, the last one before approval.
Most of the pharmaceutical laboratories involved in these investigations are developing work in collaboration with the two major existing global networks to foster biomedical research: the Coalition for Innovations and Epidemic Preparation in the USA and the Innovative Medicines Initiative in the Union European Union.
In total, according to Ifpma data, there are currently about 80 clinical trials underway for new experimental treatments and vaccines under development for the coronavirus, which include studies on the current covid-19 and also related to Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome ( SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).
In the field of developing a possible vaccine, researchers estimate that before 12 or 18 months it will not be possible to have an effective vaccine.
This is the “at best” estimate and assumes that one or two of the first vaccines are finally successful, according to Ifpma, who also recalled that, in general, only one in 10 vaccines under investigation ends up being approved.
Among the candidates to obtain this vaccine stands out the research of the German pharmaceutical company CureVac, which is developing a prophylactic vaccine, based on the molecule “mRNA”, against the new coronavirus and which hopes to start clinical trials in early summer, in Germany and in Belgium.
Among the drugs under study are antivirals previously tested in pathologies such as Ebola and HIV.
Other lines of investigation include immunotherapeutic and antimalarial drugs, whose activity has shown signs of being relevant to face the new coronavirus.
There are companies that are working with drugs initially thought to treat arthritis or with drugs derived from blood plasma to treat high-risk individuals.
The new coronavirus, responsible for the covid-19 pandemic, has already infected more than 727,000 people worldwide, of whom nearly 35,000 have died. Of the total cases of infection, at least 142,300 are considered cured.
The European continent, with more than 396,000 infected and around 25,000 dead, is the one with the highest number of cases today. Italy is the country in the world with the most fatalities: 10,779 dead, in 97,689 confirmed cases until Sunday.
Spain is the second country with the highest number of deaths, registering 7,340, among 85,195 confirmed cases of infection to date, while the United States has the highest number of infected (143,055).
In Portugal, according to the balance made today by the Directorate-General for Health, there were 140 deaths, 21 more than the day before (+ 17.6%), and 6,408 cases of confirmed infections, which represents an increase of 446 in compared to Sunday (+ 7.5%).
Of those infected, 571 are hospitalized, 164 of whom are in intensive care units, and there are 43 patients who have recovered.
Portugal, where the first confirmed cases were registered on March 2nd, is in a state of emergency from 00:00 on March 19th until 23:59 on April 2nd.