Your Next COVID-19 Vaccine Can Be a Pill – Here’s How It Works
Why are researchers using a different method?
The technology used for the COVID-19 vaccines has been debated for months in terms of which one is the most effective. The three main methods used are:
- mRNA: the substance contains part of the virus which teaches the cells to produce a protein which can fight the SARS-CoV-2 virus;
- protein subunit: this one contains harmless proteins from the virus (and not the entire germ); in case of a COVID-19 infection, the immune system will recognize the virus and know how to fight it;
- vector: a modified version of another virus contains material from the SARS-CoV-2 virus; once it gets into the system, the cells produce a protein which triggers our immune system to create B-lymphocytes and T-lymphocytes which fight the virus.
For the oral vaccines and the nasal sprays, researchers are aiming to achieve long-term protection that works against the newer variants as well.