Alabama Newscenter — COVID-19 mRNA Vaccines: How Could Anything Developed This Quickly Be Safe?

| May 28, 2021 @ 10:00 am

By Jeff Hansen

How could anything developed this quickly be safe?

For many Americans, the arrival of COVID-19 vaccines less than a year after the pandemic began is, quite literally, unbelievable. That skepticism is contributing to hesitancy to get the shot – especially among those concerned that the most widely used COVID-19 vaccines rely on messenger RNA, or mRNA, to induce protection. This is the first time that any mRNA vaccine has been approved for human use.

But the development of mRNA vaccines against COVID-19 is no overnight success. In fact, they have a remarkable back story stretching back decades. Without one researcher’s determination, two companies with vision, a longtime network of university labs, and decades of taxpayer funding in treatments for influenza and HIV, particularly by the National Institutes of Health, COVID-19 vaccines might still be years away. Even then, it took a massive, unprecedented investment by the U.S. government to get these shots from labs into arms faster than ever before.

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Alabama News Center tels the stories of the people and businesses powering the states of Alabama, striving to make Alabama a wonderful place to live and work.

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