The Vaccination for COVID-19 of people aging 30 years or above against COVID-19 will begin from Saturday (today).
Planning and Development Minister Asad Umar tweeted on Friday that it was decided in the National Command and Operation Center’s meeting on Friday.
Two of the new vaccines developed by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna use mRNA technology. The advantages of mRNA vaccines are numerous – they are fast to develop, cheaper, and easier to manufacture than more traditional vaccines. Although RNA vaccines have not been used on the public before, this technology has been carefully developed for over a decade and there are many reasons to be reassured that they are safe.
So how does an mRNA vaccine work? RNA (ribonucleic acid) is related to DNA, and mRNA is messenger RNA, part of our genetic code that tells cells what proteins to make. The COVID-19 vaccines exploit this by sending a copy of the messenger RNA belonging to the coronavirus into our cells instructing them to make spike proteins similar to those found on the surface of the COVID-19 virus. This works because the spike protein triggers a strong immune reaction in our bodies.
But the viral RNA does not tamper with our own genetic code because it does not enter the nucleus at the heart of our cells, and so does not come into contact with our DNA. Also RNA disintegrates within about 72 hours.
Asad Umar said that the process of messaging would start from Friday.