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Thousands Of Monkeys Infected In Effort To Develop Coronavirus Vaccine

by | February 24, 2020

Thousands of rhesus macaques have been infected with a strain of coronavirus as scientists search for a cure for the disease.

The US National Institutes of Health (NIH) infected 2,400 monkeys with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS- CoV).

The infected monkeys were then treated with a potential vaccine — known as Remdesivir — that has been reported to work as a preventative method.

“Promising Study Results”

“Remdesivir has previously protected animals against a variety of viruses in lab experiments,” said a spokesperson for the NIH, “The drug has been shown experimentally to effectively treat monkeys infected with Ebola and Nipah viruses.”

“The promising study results support additional clinical trials of remdesivir for MERS-CoV.”

Coronavirus has caused more than 2,500 deaths around the world, and currently has no confirmed vaccine or treatment.

coronavirus animal monkey testing
There is no known vaccine for COVID-19 (Soni’s/Shutterstock.com)

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Coronavirus Animal Testing

Scientists are now working to test the vaccine against COVID-19, which is the strain of coronavirus responsible for the current global health crisis.

Data shows that approximately 3,000 monkeys are used every year in the UK for medical research, with as many as 70,000 being tested on annually in the US.

What do you think about the use of animals for medical research? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!


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