Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, scientists have been working at a record-breaking pace to develop a vaccine. This usually takes years, even decades. Universities, companies, non-profits and nations have collaborated like never before. Only one year later, vaccines are here. What should you do when a mysterious microbe comes knocking? Stay calm, learn the facts, get vaccinated and enjoy a GIANTmicrobes Covid-19 vaccine!
Vaccines are one of the greatest medical advances of all time. Vaccination programs have saved millions of lives. Your body’s immune system acts like a security system to protect you against invading viruses, bacteria and other microbes. When harmful microbes make it past your skin, mucous and other surface barriers, they trigger the immune response. This involves white blood cells and antibodies that target specific microbes. Antibodies tag the microbe so your immune system can recognize it. If this microbe attacks in the future, your body can destroy it.
Natural immunization occurs when you become immune to a microbe due to infection. Active immunization employs a vaccine to stimulate the immune response. Vaccines cause your body to create and store away antibodies for microbes that have never infected you. Vaccines are truly amazing - they protect against a disease without causing the disease. So even if you have never encountered the coronavirus that causes Covid-19, SARS-CoV2, the vaccine will protect you from it.
Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, scientists have been working at a record- breaking pace to develop a vaccine. This usually takes years, even decades. When Covid-19 arrived, universities, companies, non-profit organizations and nations collaborated like never before on various technologies. There are many types of vaccines. Some contain dead or weakened microbes, inactivated toxins or a piece of microbe. The first Covid-19 vaccines use a synthetic version of a genetic molecule called messenger RNA. This causes human cells to produce a harmless coronavirus spike protein, which then stimulates the body to make antibodies. This and other Covid-19 vaccine technologies train your immune system to destroy the actual coronavirus if it attacks your body later.
Thanks to vaccines, humans have been able to obliterate deadly diseases such as smallpox and polio, as well as reduce the prevalence of measles, HPV, the flu and dozens of other illnesses. Covid-19 vaccines slow the spread of the disease and drive down the rate of infections. Vaccines save lives, protecting each person who takes them and society as a whole.