NewsCovering Louisiana


Tulane Primate Research Center receives live samples of coronavirus as research for vaccine begins

Wuhan Coronavirus
Posted at 9:59 PM, Feb 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-28 23:05:12-05

Local researchers are working to find solutions to the Coronavirus, as the third confirmed case of the virus in the United States through community transmission was confirmed Friday night.

WWL-TV reports that live samples of the virus arrived at Tulane National Primate Research Center on Wednesday.

Teams there will first develop an animal model of the virus and infect nonhuman primates to try and figure out how the virus is spread, how it progresses, and if certain groups of people are more susceptible.

Another of their goals is to develop a vaccine.

Researchers say finding a vaccine could take one to three years.

Earlier this year, the research center became one of the first research centers in the country to obtain approval from the CDC to receive samples of the novel coronavirus.

All work will be conducted under stringent safety and quality standards, according to the center.

Dr. Skip Bohm, Chief Veterinary Medical Officer at the research center, says the public should not be concerned about the live samples.

"The level of containment that we're working with is actually higher than required," said Dr. Bohm. "The public should feel comfortable that the way we will conduct this research is the safest way possible."