Spain introduces the first intranasal vaccine against Covid-19

by Lorraine Williamson
Intranasal vaccine
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MADRID – An intranasal vaccine from Spanish soil will be the first to be administered through the nose. Although it will not be on the market for at least a year, it will be resistant to Covid-19 and all its variants and is the first vaccine that will not transmit the virus. 

The Spanish High Council for Scientific Research (CSIC) is currently working on three vaccines against Covid-19. The development of this particular vaccine is led by virologist Luis Enjuanes and, like many other vaccines, involves a dose of RNA. However, the Spanish prototype may be on the market a lot later, but for several reasons it will be better than the vaccines currently being admistered around the world against Covid-19.

Three reasons why this intranasal vaccine is better than existing Covid-19 vaccines 

Spanish news site El Economista interviewed Enjuanes and the CSIC about the vaccine. This vaccine is said to be better than current vaccines for three reasons:

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  • The vaccine is self-replicating; the administered dose of RNA multiplies up to 5,000 times within the body.
  • Not only are people protected by this vaccine, but they cannot transmit it to others.
  • Administration can be carried out intranasally. This provides better protection for the airways. Although drug safety authorities prefer intramuscular administration (via inoculation). The virologist states that nasal administration is preferred as this is where the virus often enters the body. “If that area is the first to be covered by the vaccine, then there is better protection,” said Enjuanes.

The CSIC says the vaccine is currently being tested on mice and hamsters and then on macaque monkeys. If all results are good, then clinical tests on humans will follow. If no problems arise, the vaccine will be on the market in early 2022.

Third Covid-19 vaccine from Spain

This is not the first vaccine against Covid-19 from Spain. The Spanish CSIC is currently working with different research teams on three vaccines: that of Mariano Esteban together with the biopharmaceutical partner Zendal, the vaccine of Vicente Larraga of the bio-research centre Margarita Salas and the aforementioned intranasal vaccine of Luis Enjuanes.

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