Tests on mice a success; human trials may begin after summer.

Italian researchers have claimed that they have successfully developed a vaccine to contain Covid-19.

Luigi Aurisicchio, CEO of Takis, the firm developing the drug, said that a candidate vaccine has neutralised the virus in human cells for the first time, Arab News reported.

“This is the most advanced stage of testing of a candidate vaccine created in Italy. Human tests are expected after this summer,” Aurisicchio was quoted as saying to Italian news agency ANSA.

The researchers experimented on mice, which developed antibodies that blocked the virus from infecting cells. Five vaccine candidates generated a large number of antibodies, and two with the best results were selected.

All vaccine candidates are based on the genetic material of the DNA protein “spike”, the molecular tip used by coronavirus to enter human cells. They are injected with the ‘electroporation’ technique, which consists of an intramuscular injection followed by a brief electrical impulse, helping the vaccine break into the cells and activate the immune system.

Researchers believe that this makes their vaccine effective in generating functional antibodies against the spike protein, particularly in the lung cells.

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