The University of Maryland School of Medicine's Center for Vaccine Development and Global Health is now taking part in conducting experimental trials for a potential coronavirus vaccine.
On Monday, researchers injected the first of four subjects they are using to test the potential vaccine. The four patients are young and healthy, and are providing themselves in the hope of being part of a study that finds a vaccine that could one day save lives.
David Rach, the first patient injected with the test vaccine says, "I'm doing this for the greater good. I'm also do it because I find the entire concept very interesting. The only way out of this mess for the foreseeable future is to find an effective vaccine. The only way to get an effective vaccine is to get them through trials."
The potential vaccine is different than a traditional vaccine because "it's just the envelope protein, which then your own immune system will see, recognize it's a virus particle, and it will start mounting an immune response against it."
That means this test vaccine does not run the risk of infecting the recipient with the coronavirus.
At least eight other vaccine candidates are being tested worldwide according to the Milken Institute. The New York University Grossman School of Medicine is also participating in the trial.
Should the tests go well, the researchers plan to submit the vaccine to the US Food and Drug Administration for approval this fall.
If the vaccine being tested proves to be safe, the study will expand to a wider range of individuals that include those seen as a higher risk to the coronavirus.