China Approves World's First Inhaled COVID Vaccine

Photo: Getty Images [via BBC]

The Facts

  • China has become the first country to approve an inhaled COVID vaccine for emergency use as a booster shot, using a harmless adenovirus as a carrier for genetic code to teach the body to fight the virus.

  • The vaccine, called Convidecia Air, changes the liquid form of the vaccine into an aerosol using a nebulizer and can then be inhaled through the mouth using the nebulizer machine.

The Spin

Narrative A

Nasal vaccines should act more quickly than injected vaccines and could theoretically reduce transmission while also preventing mild illness. With over 100 oral or nasal vaccines in development around the world, China has made the first step in what will hopefully be a common way of treating COVID in the coming years.

Narrative B

With the vaccine lacking any publicly available verified or peer-reviewed data on its efficacy, the approval of CanSino's inhaled vaccine may indicate that China is feeling the pressure of its zero-COVID policy - which disrupts travel and the wider economy - ahead of key political meetings next month.

Nerd narrative

There's a 50% chance that China will end its zero-COVID policy by December 2024, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

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