From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : BCG Vaccine
Mains level : Coronovirus and the hunt for its vaccine
According to a US-based research, a combination of reduced morbidity and mortality could make the Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccination a “game-changer” in the fight against novel coronavirus.
What is BCG Vaccine?
- Bacillus Calmette–Guérin (BCG) vaccine is a vaccine primarily used against tuberculosis (TB).
- In countries where TB or leprosy is common, one dose is recommended in healthy babies as close to the time of birth as possible.
- In areas where tuberculosis is not common, only children at high risk are typically immunized, while suspected cases of tuberculosis are individually tested for and treated.
How can TB vaccine help fight COVID-19?
- The BCG vaccine contains a live but weakened strain of tuberculosis bacteria that provokes the body to develop antibodies to attack TB bacteria.
- This is called an adaptive immune response, because the body develops a defense against a specific disease-causing microorganism, or pathogen, after encountering it.
- Most vaccines create an adaptive immune response to a single pathogen.
- Unlike other vaccines, the BCG vaccine may also boost the innate immune system, first-line defenses that keep a variety of pathogens from entering the body or from establishing an infection.