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No Sinister Plan Behind COVID-19 Vaccine, Says Nigerian-Born Doctor Leading Pfizer Research

Ronke Idowu  
Updated November 23, 2020
Onyema Ogbuagu

 

Onyema Ogbuagu, a Nigerian-born researcher and medical doctor has dispelled misconceptions concerning the COVID-19 vaccine noting that there is no sinister plan in the development of the vaccine.

Ogbuagu is an Associate Professor of medicine at Yale University. He is one of those leading the research at Pfizer for a COVID-19 vaccine in the United States.

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Speaking concerning some misconceptions about the vaccine, in a series on Tweet on his official handle, he said misinformation about the pandemic may lead to loss of lives.

Read below the points highlighted in Ogbuagu’s series of Tweets:


Let’s dispel some rumors especially because misinformation about COVID-19 may and can cost lives. Enough already!

Vaccine efficacy results are real. They were not delayed to hurt or help any politician.

The Pfizer vaccine doesn’t contain the SARS CoV-2 virus or parts of it!

No nefarious or sinister plan to inject people with a labeling code. The mRNA vaccine is not integrated into recipient’s genome.

No fetal tissue is used for the mRNA vaccine.

And No!…researchers such as myself are not part of any conspiracies.

We just want to apply science to improve patient outcomes and even better, to prevent disease.

We can only work our way out of this pandemic through effective vaccines especially because it is difficult to achieve optimal mask-wearing and physical distancing to end the pandemic.

Think of how vaccines have made deadly diseases either go away (smallpox) or become relatively rare (such as measles).

When the “COVID” vaccine becomes available, let’s roll up our sleeves and let’s end this thing!

Another challenge would be the equitable distribution of vaccines.

High vs. low/middle-income countries, and even in developed nations, to ensure that vulnerable and underserved populations, disproportionally affected by the pandemic are proportionally reached!

Now is time for strategic distribution plans at global, national, and community level.

 

 

 

Pfizer and BioNTech had announced that a completed study shows that their experimental COVID-19 vaccine is 95 percent effective.

“The study results mark an important step in this historic eight-month journey to bring forward a vaccine capable of helping to end this devastating pandemic,” Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla said during the announcement

Pfizer was quoted as saying it would be able to supply 50 million doses by the end of 2020, and around 1.3 billion by the end of 2021.

Ogbuagu is an associate Professor of Medicine, in the clinician-educator track and Director of the HIV Clinical Trials program of the Yale AIDS Program, Section of Infectious Diseases of the Yale School of Medicine.

 

 

-Ogbuagu Bio-

Ogbuagu’s profile on the website of Yale School of Medicine states that his clinical responsibilities include educating and training medical students, residents, and infectious diseases fellows in various capacities in inpatient and outpatient settings; and through structured course work and other teaching sessions.

“As a faculty of the HIV training track of the Yale-Internal Medicine primary care program and for over 6 years as a faculty of the Human Resources for Health program in Rwanda, I have extensive experience with curriculum development, structuring of residency training programs, and mentoring residents and faculty. In Rwanda specifically, I have and continue to mentor medical residents and junior faculty in quality improvement and clinical research projects that are locally relevant and addressing important infectious diseases-related problems (particularly HIV/AIDS and antimicrobial resistance).

“Furthermore, I have facilitated meaningful educational and research collaborations between faculty and trainees across institutions. As the program director of World Bank and HRSA-funded efforts supporting the Liberia College of Physicians and surgeons (LCPS)–run Internal medicine residency training program, I have overseen the selection and deployment of faculty to Liberia, and am responsible for educational programs and activities aimed at strengthening the residency training program. Overall, my expertise and collective experiences to date have positioned me to design and run successful projects around capacity building in low-resource settings including developing and implementing innovative and robust medical training and research programs for faculty, fellows, residents, and students.”

For five years now, Ogbuagu has been the Director of the Yale AIDS Program HIV clinical trials program, and a principal investigator on numerous pharmacokinetic, phase 2 and 3 safety and efficacy trials of novel antiviral compounds (HIV).

More, recently, given the alarming rate of new infections among men who have sex with men (MSM), he has focused on HIV prevention trials including being a co-principal investigator on a Yale CIRA funded project, which has supported the formation of a cohort of men who have sex with men, who are at high risk for HIV and are engaged in HIV PrEP services in order to study the impact of substance use on retention in care and adherence to PrEP.

He is also the lead investigator on the international DISCOVER trial evaluating TAF/FTC vs TDF/FTC for HIV prevention among MSM and transgender women.

He is Yale’s principal investigator on multiple investigational therapeutic and preventative clinical trials for COVID-19 including remdesivir (now FDA approved), leronlimab and remdesivir and tocilizumab combination therapy as well as the Pfizer/BioNTech Vaccine trial.

 

-A UNICAL Graduate With Many Honours-

Ogbuagu studied medicine at the University of Calabar, Cross River state, in 2003. After graduation, he interned at the Ebonyi State University Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki, Nigeria.

He then proceeded to intern at Mount Sinai School of Medicine (Elmhurst), New York. He rose to become a chief resident at the same school after which he became a fellow of infectious diseases, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut.

In 2015, Ogbuagu became a fellow at, American College of Physicians. In 2017, he was a nominee for Charles W. Bohmfalk Award in Clinical Science, Yale University School of Medicine. In the same year, he won the Steve Huot Faculty Award for Dedication and Excellence, Yale University School of Medicine Internal Medicine Primary Care programme.

In 2019, Ogbuagu was awarded the Gerald H. Friedland award for outstanding international research. In 2020, he emerged as a nominee for Charles W. Bohmfalk Award in Clinical Science, Yale University School of Medicine.

 

-US Missions Recognition-

United States Diplomatic Mission Nigeria also recognised his contribution to the world of Medicine. In a tweet on Monday, November 23, they said, “Our hats off to Dr. Onyema Ogbuagbu at Yale who helped develop a COVID-19 vaccine!”