All Drugmakers on Deck

In the massive push to get a COVID-19 vaccine to market, drugmakers are looking to do within a year what often takes a decade or more, Bloomberg reports.
 
70+ coronavirus vaccine candidates are in the works worldwide—3 of them have reached the human trial stage.
 
But is the answer already out there? Some researchers are focusing on a decades-old tuberculosis vaccine known for its “off-target” benefits against other pathogens,STAT reports.
 
Widely used in low- and middle-income countries, children given BCG have seen lower death rates from other respiratory infections.

This fresh wave of research is worthwhile—but beware the untested hype, warns prominent TB researcher Madhukar Pai. A WHO scientific brief also noted an absence of evidence.

Pai cautioned that some have hastily linked BCG use with lower COVID-19 death rates in some countries. That association, Pai says, is likely more to do with under-reporting of cases than with the vaccine itself.

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