Vaccines that grow on leaves and don’t need needles: A look at COVID jabs you may not have heard of

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You’ve heard of Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca, but what about Medigen and Zydus Cadila? 

In the race to vaccinate the world and in the face of supply issues and sanctions, some countries have developed homegrown vaccines.

There are geopolitics and vaccine nationalism at play, but the pandemic has seen a flurry of vaccine development – from the first-ever DNA vaccine to one grown on leaves.

While a lot of these vaccines sound new, the science and technologies they’re built on have been around for a long time.

As ANU virologist David Tscharke notes, vaccine development is a tough business – in the past, if a vaccine already existed for a disease it was difficult to break through with a new idea.

But the pandemic has…

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