By Daniel Eisenman, Executive Director of Biosafety Services, and Stephanie Pyle, Director of Content and Communications
A common trope in sci-fi movies involves concerns about potentially smashing into uncharted objects while traveling at warp speed or hyperspace. But what about the safety of vaccines being developed and tested at warp speed?
Compared to the processes of 20 years ago, development of the current SARS-CoV-2 vaccine candidates has been remarkably swift thanks to genetic engineering and the additional resources afforded via Operation Warp Speed. In the past, it could take years to develop an investigational vaccine and several additional years for testing in clinical trials. In 2020, gene therapy techniques shortened that development timeframe to mere weeks. What has changed? Is this new approach used to develop COVID-19 vaccines safe?