Using mRNA technology as a medicine is a different method than treating illness with other drug classes. Normally, it plays an important role in human biology.
It also takes advantage of normal biological procedures so as to create desired therapeutic effects and express proteins.
This allows potential treatment of different diseases, some of which you cannot address with the new technologies.
A Brief History of mRNA
The mRNA technology history began way back in 1961 when Brenner described the presence of an unstable molecule, coping information that the DNA encoded and direct the protein synthesis, which is RNA.
Brenner concluded that the encoding information is basically not present in the stable ribosomal RNA. Rather, transient RNA molecules serve as transcripts of codes.
Using mRNA to Make a New Category of Medicine
Using mRNA as a medicine opens up many opportunities to prevent and treat disease. mRNA drugs may go inside your cells so as to direct the production of protein, something that is not possible with other medical approaches.
This means it is possible to treat and prevent diseases, which are not addressable these days; thus, impacting lives globally and improving health.
mRNA Vaccine and Covid-19
mRNA (messenger ribonucleic acid) provides cells with some instructions to make proteins. Basically, mRNA has the instructions to make the SARS-CoV-2 spike proteins. These proteins are found on the virus surface, which causes Covid-19.
The mRNA molecules are recipes telling the body cells how to produce spike proteins. After producing proteins, the body cells break down those instructions and even get rid of them.
The Janssen and AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccines are two viral vector vaccines. These two vaccines use the harmless virus as the delivery system. They both teach the body how to make proteins, which may trigger immune responses.
Thousands of scientific research on vector vaccines have been carried out and published. According to these studies, some vaccines used for the outbreak of Ebola have used vector technology.
Types of Covid-19 Vaccines
Covid-19 vaccines may prevent you from getting the virus from worsening and dying. Every Covid-19 vaccine makes the immune system make antibodies that help in fighting the virus. The major types of Covid-19 vaccines available currently or still being studied include the following:
- Protein subunit vaccine
- Vector vaccine
- mRNA (messenger RNA) vaccine
The mRNA Technological Development behind the Covid-19 Vaccines
In the midst of the devastation of Covid-19, there has been good news, which is the success of mRNA vaccines.
Using a similar approach, researchers can develop more effective vaccines for different illnesses, including diseases people have no inoculation of presently. When another pandemic comes, researchers will be able to get many people vaccinated faster.
Developing mRNA into Vaccines
When it comes to developing vaccines, the mRNA codes for antigen. When translated, the antigen stimulates the immune response to confer defense against a virus.
The mRNA is usually short-lived and doesn’t change the DNA. This means mRNA is safe for the development of therapies and vaccines.
Teaching Immune Response
While building medicines using mRNA is a new concept for people. It emerged as the alternative to the traditional development of vaccines.
The theory behind vaccines is that messenger RNA tells cells to make proteins used by certain viruses that set off the immune response.
The Advantages of Messenger RNA Vaccines
Theoretically, the technology behind the messenger RNA vaccines is adaptable, which allows quick updates as new viral variants are discovered.
Because mRNA vaccines depend on the sequences of viral proteins, producing new vaccines involves changing the sequence, especially when you already know what kind of protein to make.
Messenger RNA vaccines are also more reliably manufactured and quicker compared to traditional ones. Moderna, for instance, only took around seven weeks, from vaccine design to shipment and manufacturing.
While the production and design of mRNA vaccines might take some weeks, necessary clinical tests to determine efficacy and safety still need a few months of examining.
For most people, the development of Covid-19 vaccines after the global pandemic started is unbelievable. In turn, this skepticism contributes to hesitancy so as to get the shot, particularly among the people concerned that the widely used vaccines depend on mRNA to induce an immune response. For centuries, this is the first time medical experts have approved mRNA vaccines for human beings to use.