Half A Million Sharks May Be Killed In Effort To Produce CoVid-19 Vaccine, Conservationists Say

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Half A Million Sharks May Be Killed In Effort To Produce CoVid-19 Vaccine, Conservationists Say

Conservationists and animal rights activists have claimed that the production of the new CoVid-19 vaccine will require half-a-million sharks to be killed.

This is because the chemical used in the production of vaccines is found in the livers of sharks. Squalene is used in a number of vaccines already and is a key ingredient in many of the CoVid-19 vaccines being trialled. Activists claim that as many as 3 million sharks a year are already killed in order to obtain squalene.

To provide one dose to all individuals on the planet would require 250,000 sharks to be killed, and because it is thought many vaccines will require two doses to be effective, this could mean 500,000 sharks being killed in total. Worryingly, some scientists have suggested that the new CoVid-19 vaccines, much like the flu vaccine, will not give lifetime immunity and therefore will need to be delivered on a yearly basis, resulting in even more shark deaths.

The claim was made by Shark Allies, a US based shark conservation group. Their founder, Stefanie Brendl, was clear to make out that the group did not want to do anything that could hinder a vaccine being produced but hoped that alternatives could be used instead. She told the Daily Mail:

"Harvesting something from a wild animal is never going to be sustainable, especially if it's a top predator that doesn't reproduce in huge numbers. There's so many unknowns of how big and how long this pandemic might go on, and then how many versions of it we have to go through, that if we continue using sharks, the numbers of sharks taken for this product could be really high, year after year after year."

She added:

"We simply ask that testing of non-animal derived squalene is conducted alongside shark squalene so it can be replaced as soon as possible. At billions of doses needed per year, for decades to come, it is critical that we don't rely on a wild animal resource. It can be detrimental to shark species that are hunted for their oil, and it is not a reliable supply chain."

The group has now launched a petition which has already gathered thousands of signatures. The group has also stated that many viable alternatives exist to squalene, including organic non-animal based products.

Many nations are now scrambling to find a vaccine and promising results do seem to be emerging from trials. Russia stated last month that it has a workable vaccine, called Sputnik V, and reports indicate China also has a vaccine ready to go. In the UK, an Oxford University vaccine trial will soon be completing its stage 3 development and it is hoped that it will be ready for mass use by the start of 2021.

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Thinking Humanity: Half A Million Sharks May Be Killed In Effort To Produce CoVid-19 Vaccine, Conservationists Say
Half A Million Sharks May Be Killed In Effort To Produce CoVid-19 Vaccine, Conservationists Say
Animal rights activists have claimed that the production of the new CoVid-19 vaccine will require half-a-million sharks to be killed.
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