by Sarah Gilbert & Catherine Green
Books > Science
A Pioneering Moment in Scientific History
A BBC Radio 4 Book of the Week
This is the story of a race – not against other vaccines or other scientists, but against a deadly and devastating virus.
On 1 January 2020, Sarah Gilbert, Professor of Vaccinology at Oxford University, read an article about four people in China with a strange pneumonia. Within two weeks, she and her team had designed a vaccine against a pathogen that no one had ever seen before. Less than 12 months later, vaccination was rolled out across the world to save millions of lives from Covid-19.
In Vaxxers, we hear directly from Professor Gilbert and her colleague Dr Catherine Green as they reveal the inside story of making the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine and the cutting-edge science and sheer hard work behind it.
This is their story of fighting a pandemic as ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances. Sarah and Cath share the heart-stopping moments in the eye of the storm; they separate fact from fiction; they explain how they made a highly effective vaccine in record time with the eyes of the world watching; and they give us hope for the future.
Vaxxers invites us into the lab to find out how science will save us from this pandemic, and how we can prepare for the inevitable next one.