Vaccine and the Therapeutic Landscape for COVID-19 & Leveraging Innate Immunity as a First Line Defense against SARS-CoV-2


In the third TNQ-Janelia India COVID-19 seminar, Dr. Benjamin tenOever discussed work identifying the imbalance in the host immune response triggered by SARS-CoV-2 infection. A combination of elevated pro-inflammatory triggers and depression of innate antiviral responses in driving the disease. Next, Dr Florian Krammer presented an overview of SARS-CoV-2 vaccine development outlining strategies, responses till date in non-human primates and humans, and distribution logistics. Dr. C.S. Pramesh spoke about the current state of therapeutic approaches and highlighted the strengths of large, international efforts towards identifying therapeutics, like the SOLIDARITY trials. Dr. Gagandeep Kang discussed vaccine development in India and the contributions of consortia like the Coalition of Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) in jump-starting vaccine development. There were also general discussions on standardising measures of protective immunity across vaccine trials, the possibility of vaccines protecting against clinical disease but not infection, and also the utility of early intervention with interferon therapy.