Where do the vaccines come from?

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Chinese vaccine is like CoronaVac, an immunizer produced by the Sinovac Biotech laboratory, it is pejoratively called by those who describe the effectiveness of any medicine produced in China. For skeptics, the bad news is that the Asian country is one of the main suppliers of medicines and supplies to the national pharmaceutical industry.

Where vaccines come from

Most vaccines in Brazil come from India, followed by France, Indonesia, the United States, South Korea and the United Kingdom – of the 32 available in the Unified Health System (SUS), 16 are imported.

National laboratories import about 90% of the so-called active pharmaceutical ingredients. The two largest suppliers are India (37% of the active ingredients, biological or not) and China (35%). “For economic and technological reasons, the whole world imports inputs from these two countries,” Norberto Prestes, president of the Brazilian Association of the Pharmaceutical Input Industry (Abiquifi), told the BBC.

Any medicine or input marketed in Brazil needs the approval of the National Health Surveillance Agency (Anvisa) with analysis of test results provided by the manufacturer and periodic inspection of the production units.

Almost equal recipes

Vaccines generally have the same “prescription” with the following components:

Antigen

It is the most important and characteristic part of the vaccine.

They can be:

gene vaccines – The technique used replicates, in a sequence of synthetic RNA enveloped in a small layer of fat (lipid nanoparticles), the genetic information of the virus. This RNA, injected into the human body, is absorbed by the cells, which begin to replicate the virus’s genetic sequence. This activates the immune system of the vaccinated person;

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viral vector vaccines – Adenoviruses are modified to carry the protein of the virus to be fought and thus trigger the production of antibodies and the response of the immune system;

protein-based vaccines – The immunizer carries proteins (whole or just fragments) of the virus wrapped in lipid layers;

inactivated or attenuated virus vaccines – It is the oldest method of producing immunizers, using the pathogen itself weakened or even killed with chemicals.

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