The next pandemic can get worse, says the scientists behind the COVID vaccine

According to one of the scientists behind the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, the COVID-19 pandemic is not over yet, and the next pandemic could be even worse.

“This is not the last time a virus threatens our lives and our lives.” Said Professor Dame Sarah Gilbert, an excerpt released before the speech on Monday. “The truth is that the following may be worse. It can be more contagious, more deadly, or both.”

The scientific advances made in the fight against the deadly virus “must not be lost” due to the cost of fighting the current pandemic, she named in honor of the late broadcaster this year. Said while delivering Richard Dimbleby Lecture.

Gilbert, a professor of vaccine science at Oxford University, who developed the COVID-19 vaccine used in Over 170 countries Together with her team, he warned that a future pandemic could be fatal.

“We can’t forgive the situation where we’ve experienced everything we’ve experienced, and the huge financial losses we’ve suffered mean we don’t yet have the money to fight a pandemic,” she continues. I did. “The progress we have made and the knowledge we have gained must not be lost.”

“Similar to investing in the military, intelligence and diplomacy to prevent war, we must invest in people, research, manufacturing and institutions to prevent a pandemic,” she added.

Gilbert cited a newly detected COVID-19 mutant of concern called Omicron, which was reported by South Africa to the World Health Organization in late November. The new strain has created a wave of travel bans and local measures as researchers investigate its infectivity.

Much remains unclear about this variant, whether it is as contagious as some health officials suspect, whether it makes people more seriously ill, and whether the vaccine can be stopped.

The mutant peaplomer “contains mutations that are already known to increase infectivity,” she said.

“But there are additional changes that may mean that antibodies induced by vaccine or infection by other mutants may not be very effective in preventing infection by Omicron,” Gilbert said. I added. “Until we know more, we need to be cautious and take steps to slow the spread of this new variety.”

The day before, Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), said he believes the Omicron COVID-19 mutant is unlikely to be the last.

“It’s certainly possible that this isn’t the last new variant that attracts a lot of attention and a lot of concern,” Collins said.Meet the PressOn Sunday, when faced with the possibility of a “new dominant variant” appearing every six months.

“It has the most mutations I’ve ever seen. It’s Omicron with about 50 mutations compared to the original Wuhan virus,” he said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Isabelle van Brugen


Isabel van Brugen is an award-winning journalist and currently a news reporter for The Epoch Times. She holds a Master’s degree in Newspaper Journalism from City University of London.