18 Feb 2021 12:10

EpiVacCorona coronavirus vaccine forms 3 lines of defense in immune system - specialist

MOSCOW. Feb 18 (Interfax) - The EpiVacCorona coronavirus vaccine is capable of forming three lines of defense in the human immune system to ward off various strains of the novel coronavirus, head of the zoonotic infections and flu department at Rospotrebnadzor's Vector Center Alexander Ryzhikov said.

"The EpiVacCorona peptide vaccine is a simple solution forming an immune response to diverse antigen variants of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus," Ryzhikov said in an interview with Interfax.

"It generates an immune response [...] without 'burdening' the immune system with the creation of less important antibodies and thus prevents the development of antibody dependent enhancement of the infection and reduces the risk of cytokine storm," he said.

According to Ryzhikov, EpiVacCorona forms three lines of defense in the human immune system: the first two lines of defense are associated with the interaction between antibodies and viral proteins, which prevents the virus from penetrating cells, and the third line of defense is activated if the virus eventually gets into cells.

"The third line of defense activates both humoral and cell immunity, which kills the infected cell in order to contain the virus and prevent the infection of healthy cells," Ryzhikov said.

As to why a different testing system is needed to check the level of antibodies after vaccination with EpiVacCorona, Ryzhikov said, "The new technological platform of peptide vaccines requires the elaboration of new approaches toward the evaluation of post-vaccination immunity," which will measure both humoral and cell virus-specific immune response, unlike classic testing systems.

"As the mass use of the vaccine begins, all regions will be supplied with systems for testing post-vaccination immunity," he said.

Mass vaccination with EpiVacCorona is due to begin in March.