The Vaccine Quiz: The Race to a Coronavirus Vaccine

Dec 2, 2020 12:02 PM 5 min play

How do you defeat a deadly virus?

By trusting science and scientists. (And, of course, by staying indoors and washing your hands regularly!)

Around the world, dozens of teams have been working around the clock all year to develop a vaccine for the coronavirus. For scientists, it is the most urgent quest of their lives. The pace of development is staggering. One vaccine team, an American biotech firm, developed a possible cure in 63 days and moved into human trials – a “world indoor record”.

The tireless efforts are now bearing fruit. In recent weeks, three different vaccines reported high efficacy in their clinical trials - Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and Oxford-AstraZeneca. And today, the UK became the first country to license a vaccine (Pfizer's), and will begin rolling it out for public use in a matter of days.

So, how about a Quiz on the race to develop a COVID-19 vaccine? How much do you know about the global efforts and successes when it comes to developing, manufacturing and distributing a vaccine for the coronavirus?

Let's find out! Here's what awaits you:

  1. The race to develop a COVID-19 vaccine is proving to be a historically short one. Usually, developing a vaccine takes years, if not decades. But barely a year into the pandemic, we already have three viable vaccine candidates. The previous record for swiftest vaccine development was four years, when a vaccine for _______ was developed in 1967.
  2. Regulatory approval for the first vaccine roll-out is expected to be finalised in many countries in a matter of days. On December 2nd, which vaccine became the first to be approved for public use, and which country will administer it?
  3. Who recently suggested that the Indian Government could allow companies to use their CSR funds to vaccinate employees?
  4. Yes or No? Serum Institute of India has started manufacturing Codagenix’s COVID-19 vaccine candidate – CDX-005.
  5. Manufacturing a vaccine is a long and labourious process. But distribution of a vaccine comes with its own set of challenges too. X is a body constituted in August 2020 to map out strategies for vaccine distribution from cities to the hinterland. Identify X.
  6. To remain potent, vaccines need to be stored in very cold temperatures. For this, you need cold storage infrastructure. Which state has the highest cold storage capacity in India?
  7. To distribute the vaccine to 1.3 billion citizens, India will tap into the infrastructure of the Universal Immunisation Programme, which is one of the largest in the world. Which of the following diseases has it been used to combat?
  8. The World Health Organisation is the premier international public health body. Its role has come all the more under the spotlight due to the pandemic. Name its current Director-General.
  9. The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is known for its use of cutting-edge technology called messenger-RNA or mRNA. How does this function?
  10. Let's bring it home...literally. There are a handful of COVID-19 vaccines being developed domestically in India. Which of these is NOT involved in this process?


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