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'Experts think we could possibly see first sign of a vaccine in about a year'

Written by: Neo Koza

Ekurhuleni mayor Mzwandile Masina recently made a claim about a "vaccine" from Cuba that would help fight COVID-19.

During his state of the city address, Masina said he would use emergency funds “to procure the vaccine Inferon B from Cuba” to help fight the coronavirus outbreak.

Africa Check has done its research on the statement and says Masina appears to have been referring to interferon alpha-2b, a drug used to treat the symptoms of diseases caused by some earlier strains of coronavirus, but this vaccine is not made to prevent COVID-19.

Africa Check acting deputy editor Kate Wilkinson unpacks this.

This is a man-made substance of something that is called an interferon and that is a substance that is produced in lots of different forms by the human immune system and what the substance does in your body is that it helps to protect you against infections but it is important to state that just because there is a substance that helps you fight off infection, it does not in any way make this a vaccine.

Kate Wilkinson, Acting deputy editor - Africa Check

Actually, the day before the mayor made his statement, Cuba's foreign affairs ministry released a statement and in the statement they say pretty explicitly that there is no preventative vaccine or specific treatment at this time for the new coronavirus.

Kate Wilkinson, Acting deputy editor - Africa Check

Wilkinson says according to experts, we may only see the first signs of a vaccine within a year to a year and a half from now.

Click on the link below to hear the full conversation and more....


This article first appeared on 702 : 'Experts think we could possibly see first sign of a vaccine in about a year'




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