Hate needles? Well, an oral coronavirus vaccine in the works could become the best protection against COVID-19 and its mutations … that’s the hope of one of the L.A. Lakers owners, anyway.
Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong is the founder of ImmunityBio as well as a Lakers co-owner, and his company is behind the tests being done at a research center in El Segundo, CA to determine if a series of pills can replace injections to inoculate the population.
Researchers are experimenting with healthy volunteers under the age of 55 who haven’t had COVID yet … with some getting shots, some getting capsules and some getting a combo.
Dr. Soon-Shiong says the value of ImmunityBio’s vaccine is that it generates “killer T cells” that target the center of the coronavirus, which is less prone to mutation. Current vaccines create antibodies to the spiky part of the virus on the surface.
Though researchers are hopeful the oral T-cell-creating approach may result in greater protection against COVID … the Lakers co-owner believes capsules and injections working together would be key. Sorry, needle haters.
It may still be a while before we find out, though — the oral vaccine is only in experimental stages, and test subjects will be closely monitored for the next 12 months.