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UPMC doctors working on potential vaccine

The development of a potential vaccine against the new coronavirus causing the COVID-19 pandemic was revealed Thursday by doctors at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and UPMC.

The announcement was made during a joint online news conference with the university and UPMC in Pittsburgh. Co-senior authors of a the research Dr. Andrea Gambotto, associate professor of surgery at Pitt’s school of medicine and Dr. Louis Falo, professor and chair of dermatology at the school of medicine and UPMC, and also Dr. Donald Yealy, department of emergency medicine at UPMC and the University of Pittsburgh attended the news conference to field questions about the potential vaccine.

The vaccine, if approved, would be delivered by a novel technology, a dissolvable microneedle array.

“Our lab developed this microneedle array approach. It is a band-aid like patch that has hundreds of microscopic needles made up of a sugar-like substance that rapidly dissolves in the body,” Falo said. “The vaccine is integrated into the needles that when pressed onto the skin the needles penetrate the outer skin layer and dissolve and release the vaccine.”

Read more in Friday’s Williamsport Sun-Gazette.

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