Updates on the COVID-19 Vaccine


Photo Courtesy of: Google Images

Vice President, Mike Pence receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.

Paulina Camacho, Journalist

The FDA authorized the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines that have been given to the nation’s leaders such as Mike Pence and Dr. Anthony Fauci. These vaccines use mRna to create immunity to the virus and other vaccines are currently being trialed. 

“When you have a natural infection, the body responds to that natural infection by making all these proteins so that the next time you get exposed by that virus, the virus doesn’t have a chance … When we make a vaccine, we have to mimic natural infection but we don’t want to make you get infected; we want to do something that is really safe so that your body will make all these antibodies but it won’t need to get sick. Scientists get the genetic code of the virus, the building block genetic code, and that genetic code will contain a gene that’s going to code for an Rna, which is going to make the proteins from the virus that you want the body to make a response against,” Dr. Fauci states. 

The vaccine uses an isolated part of the virus, the protein, to inject in the body so it will create a response to it. 

The vaccine injects mRna that codes to make the “spike protein” that is on the surface of the virus. Then, the body’s cells break down those instructions because it doesn’t belong there, thus creating an immune response. The body attacks it using antibodies and the T-lymphocytes have memory of that protein that will recognize the virus if the body comes in contact with it again, to fight against it faster. Vaccines may have side effects but since the COVID-19 vaccine doesn’t even contain the virus, it cannot make patients sick with it. The COVID-19 vaccine may cause pain and swelling of the arm, as well as fever, chills, fatigue, and headaches. The vaccine is planned to be given in different phases, phase 1a contains healthcare personnel and residents of long term care facilities, 1b will be front-line

Photo of a bottle of the COVID-19 vaccine. (Photo Courtesy of: Google Images)

workers and people over 75 years of age, 1c contains people aged 65-74 and 16-74 with underlying conditions.  

“I feel extreme confidence in the safety and the efficacy of this vaccine, and I want to encourage everyone who has the opportunity to get vaccinated so that we can have a veil of protection over this country, that would end this pandemic,” said Fauci.