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Australian scientist calls for intl cooperation on pandemic prevention

Xinhua | Updated: 2021-08-11 10:34
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TEHRAN - The COVID-19 pandemic "has exposed the need for much greater international cooperation on a truly global basis to better manage and ideally prevent any future pandemic," an Australian vaccine researcher was quoted as saying by an Iranian daily.

In an interview published by Tehran Times on Monday, Nikolai Petrovsky, research director at Vaxine, an Australia-based biotechnology company that is currently developing a COVID-19 vaccine, said that "despite being over a year and a half since the start of the pandemic, the world still does not know how this pandemic started."

"Citizens of all countries suffer greatly from any pandemic, so it is important that political considerations are put aside in identifying better strategies to prevent future pandemics," he noted.

As the coronavirus continues to run rampant across the world, Petrovsky said it could take 10 to 20 years, at a minimum, to eradicate COVID-19 as "we would need to immunize the whole global population and develop new vaccines better able to block transmission and prevent infection entirely against all the variants."

"It is not going to be an easy task as the virus can keep mutating," he added.

Petrovsky also warned against the vaccination disparity between rich and poor countries. "Almost all the vaccines so far have just gone to a small number of the wealthiest countries, so this is definitely a concern," he said.

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