The couple who co-developed BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine and Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine, have made an astonishing prediction. They believe that there will be a cure for cancer in the form a vaccine by the end of this decade.
Professors Ozlem Tureci & Ugur Sahin, the husband and wife duo behind BioNTech’s pharmaceutical startup, provided the mRNA for Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccines. stated to the BBC that their company is currently creating a cancer vaccine which they believe will make a significant impact on the treatment of this deadly disease.
Tureci stated to the BBC, “Yes, we believe that a cure or to change the lives of cancer patients is within our reach.”
They are extremely confident in their approach with Sahin, the husband, telling broadcaster that they expect successful vaccines against cancer to be available before 2030.
Tureci says that it was their research on mRNA-based, patient-specific vaccines against cancer that led to spike protein discoveries. These proteins eventually acted as a “tailwind,” for the current COVID vaccines.
Tureci claimed that research on coronavirus vaccines “gives” back to cancer treatment research. This research is focused on cancerous tumors such as melanoma.
BioNTech’s vaccines, which contain mRNA (or messenger RNA), will be able to target cancer cells like they are on a “wanted poster” of the enemy, she explained to the BBC reporter. The mRNA will then be able distinguish between cancer cells and normal ones, and then kill them.
The host asked the couple if they thought there was a chance that the vaccines wouldn’t work. The wife retorted.
Tureci responded, “I don’t believe so.” “All that we know about the immune system, and what we do with a cancer vaccine, shows the clear activity — We can induce those killer T cells, we can direct them.”
“As scientists we are always hesitant in saying we will cure cancer,” she said, adding that there have been “a lot of breakthroughs” that the couple is going to pursue.
This news is both exciting and ambitious, but there are many reasons to be hopeful given the couple’s incredible track record.