Viruses can be wily adapters, changing their identities to find new hosts and thwart efforts to stop them. That’s why University of Wisconsin–Madison researchers and their collaborators are making progress toward developing universal vaccines against some the planet’s most harmful pathogens, including the virus family responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic.
Last fall, the National Institutes of Health announced it was investing in three teams working to develop a vaccine that would simultaneously work against a broad range of coronaviruses. Among them is a research collaboration, the Pan-Coronavirus Vaccine consortium, led by UW–Madison School of Veterinary Medicine Professor of Pathobiological Sciences Yoshihiro Kawaoka.
“This pan-coronavirus vaccine is basically preparing for the future,” Kawaoka says.