Nigerian Universities’ Scientists, under the aegis of COVID-19 Research Group, on Friday announced the discovery of a vaccine for the prevention of Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.Addressing a news conference on Friday at Adeleke University, Ede, in Osun, Dr Oladipo Kolawole, Leader of the team, said the vaccine was being developed locally in Africa for Africans.
Kolawole, a Specialist in Medical Virology, Immunology and Bioinformatics, at Adeleke University, Ede, however, said the vaccine would also work for other continents when unveiled.
He said the study, which led to the discovery of the vaccine, had enjoyed initial funding by the Trinity Immunodeficient Laboratory and Helix Biogen Consult, Ogbomosho, to the tune of about N7.8 million.
Kolawole said the group had been working extensively by exploring the SARS-CoV-2 genome from African countries to select the best possible potential vaccine candidates.
He said after trying out some selected processes of vaccine development, the researchers had been able to choose the best potential vaccine candidates for the SARS-CoV-2 and had made the possible latent vaccine constructs.
On how soon the unnamed vaccine would be unveiled to the public, Kolawole said that it would take a minimum of 18 months.
According to him, this is because a lot of analysis and studies, as well as approvals by medical authorities, were still required.
Also, Prof. Solomon Adebola, the Acting Vice-Chancellor of the university, said the university was poised to assist in the funding of the research with a view to bringing the vaccine to the limelight.
“We are glad that a vaccine that will provide a solution to a global problem like Coronavirus pandemic is coming from the garden.
“It is our passion to be a solution provider to such a global pandemic, and we are ready to throw our weights behind the team and make the vaccine a reality,” Adebola said.