Editor’s Letter

So once we are finished with the Covid vaccine rollout – what comes next?

What was most interesting about a recent interview with Professor Dame Sarah Gilbert was her views on where we go with vaccine technology now, writes Chris Stevenson

Monday 18 October 2021 03:05
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<p>Sarah Gilbert on the exciting future of vaccine development </p>

Sarah Gilbert on the exciting future of vaccine development

I found a recent interview with Professor Dame Sarah Gilbert, one of the architects of the Oxford vaccine, very interesting.

The vaccine rollout has been one of the most successful elements of the government's Covid-19 response – with one of our readers saying in a letter today that Boris Johnson and his ministers are taking far too much credit for the work of Prof Gilbert, her team and others around the world.

There is no doubt that the work undertaken by Prof Gilbert and her colleagues is impressive – using an approach known as “plug-and-play” where specific genetic material for a virus like Covid-19 is added to an already-prepared “base”. It meant that there was a vaccine ready to start clinical trials in less than 100 days. But what I found most interesting about the interview – conducted with the BBC – was what would be coming next now that “plug-and-play” is in use.

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