SARS vaccine race

US and European groups moving forward, but WHO would rather put SARS "back in the box."

Robert Walgate(walgate@scienceanalysed.com)
May 1, 2003

"We do believe we should start with the development of vaccine, and there are quite a few companies going ahead," said Klaus Stöhr, a World Health Organization (WHO) virologist and its chief scientist on severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), in a press briefing this week. "But on the other hand, we do believe that it will be much less costly, it will mean much less death and disease for the next 5, 10, 100 years, if we are capable of dealing with this disease now."

"This is our one-off chance to get rid of this disease. We don't need another pathogen floating around. We have enough to do with TB, AIDS, malaria, other upper respiratory tract infections, diarrhea, and so on — we don't need another vaccine which is going to be a drain on public health resources," Stöhr explained.

Despite WHO's urgent emphasis on "putting the SARS virus back...

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