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JULY 2020

Cuba’s Interferon Saves Lives


Cuba’s Interferon Saves Lives

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Originally appeared at La Jornada; Translated by Resumen Latinoamericano, North America bureau

Cuba’s interferon is saving the lives of patients with coronavirus on the island encircled by the United States, while also preparing vaccines against the disease, as will be explained later. Meanwhile, Donald Trump plunges his own people into a tragedy of biblical proportions because of his negligence in the confrontation with Covid-19. His legacy during this crisis will go down as a crime against humanity. He has now cut off funds to the World Health Organization, blocks and threatens countries like Venezuela and refuses to cooperate in the international effort against the pandemic, as do Russia, China and Cuba. While the world is cooperating on many levels to defeat the pandemic the US stands alone in its isolation and counter-productivity.

To the now established strategic resource of social isolation, the island’s scientific community has geared up its powerful institutions to maximum capacity, to provide the best protection to the people with a non-specific vaccine during this phase and also working hard to achieve a specific vaccine, in the medium term. Faithful to its tradition of solidarity, of heroic inspiration and loyalty, the island, as it has done since the beginning of the epidemic, will always make its human resources and scientific findings available to other peoples.

Interferon is a product that acts directly to make the immune system respond and activate the mechanisms of viral inhibition. It has been used in previous epidemics, says Dr. Eduardo Martínez Díaz, president of the large scientific-business conglomerate BioCubaFarma. “Normally the number of patients with Covid-19 who go into a serious or critical state is 20 percent. In Cuba, the number that reaches that stage is half, compared to the indicators at the international level. Our country’s death rate is 2.7 percent, which indicates that the way Cuban doctors treat patients, as well as our protocols, are being effective in the treatment of the disease. We think that interferon (INF) is responsible for what we are seeing in practice. He points out that Cuba produces the necessary INF for local use, as well as meeting the growing number of international requests.

Dr. Vicente Vérez Bencomo, director of the Finlay Institute of Vaccines, says, “We all dream of a specific vaccine that will solve the Covid-19 problem in one fell swoop, but there will be no solution like that this year. In the meantime, he says, there is a transitional one that does not immunize against the coronavirus but provides the so-called natural or innate immunity, which we all have, although not with the same competence. The virus doesn’t kill us, what kills is the excessive immune reaction that results from this, he says. Part of the questioning we are doing is what is responsible for the balance presented in the asymptomatic patient, who manages to control the virus. So it’s important to understand what that balance depends on.”

In the same line of thought, Dr. Gerardo Guillén Nieto, director of Biomedical Research at the Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (CIGB), explains the steps already being taken for the immediate development in Cuba of a vaccine capable of activating innate immunity. He clarifies that it is not just a CIGB project but one that exemplifies the capacity for cooperation and integration of Cuban research centers. It details that, in conjunction with the Ministry of Public Health and its regulatory agencies, on March 26 it approved the clinical study of the vaccine and on March 27 the first volunteers were already available to test it.

It is a nasal vaccine and sublingual application, which allows stimulating the immunity at a local level, where the virus is found in the body. Already in blood samples and tonsil and sublingual scrapings that have shown how the molecules on the cell surface that mark the activation of the innate immune system related to viruses are stimulated.

Guillén Nieto said that they are working on 16 lines of research, to magnify the success and be able to contribute to the control of the epidemic.

According to Dr. Martinez Diaz, asymptomatic patients are the fundamental cause of the spread of the virus. Hence the importance of doing massive research to detect them, isolate them and stop the spread. It is in this case that the so-called rapid tests can make an important contribution since they act as an indicator of infected areas, the evaluation of which can be refined with the most reliable PCR and the clinical survey in the community.

As I was finishing writing these lines, Prensa Latina reports the arrival in Qatar of a brigade of 200 Cuban doctors and health personnel, who will reinforce the 500 Cuban doctors who have been permanently in the emirate since 2012 in the fight against the coronavirus. More than 16 countries have been reached in recent weeks by Cuban solidarity to confront Covid 19.



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  • Peter Jennings

    Cuba, also Mexico, are doing good things in the medical world with the resources they have. The US embargo on Cuba is just for spite because it wouldn’t become a floating casino for american mafia.

    The US is not alone in their slow response to this virus. Sweden and other countries have a very minimal effort and haven’t closed down their economies because of it. Whether infection and/or deaths rates in Sweden will rise because of their approach is open to conjecture. The facts and figures will in the end speak for themselves.

  • Raptar Driver

    Trump is an idiot and a moron however sometimes he tells the truth when he shouldn’t. When he called this virus thing a hoax he was actually telling the truth. Of course this was a no no and idiots who believe that this is some type of pandemic are all over the orange haired baboon But this time he was right.

  • hvaiallverden

    The main difference I think regarding the Cubans, is the ability to use their brains, and dont rush, or aply the “do something” but uses their medical eduaction in an way that is showing the world what an good education can do.
    Again, the shere level of staggering bullshit, was jaw dropping from before and parts stil remains but there are lights in the tunnel, just hope its not the train that is coming, but never the less, I read more well educated/articulated articles now that just some few weeks ago.
    And I will link them sucseivly and do mind this isnt to critizes the Cubans, witch is NOT my intention at all, just hope I can add some enlightenment to the ongoing clusterf…. our “eminet” Govs are doing, based upon an hysterical MSM and the clan of mumbling idiots called “experts”.

    Pitty RU went total retard in the end of this article, He managed to piss on His own well, and crashed what little credibility He had left, f…. moron, and forget that dump, He have gone total Saker.
    Again, this time, I am more delighted, and do read this, both aditional links comes from the UR, so you get an better understanding of the present uh…. pandemic.
    Il be dammed, something that makes sense coming from an British site, yeah, whats going on.

    Some additional coment, I read much mumbo jumbo, historical referances etc, to make some points, when the facts arent even close, just take economy, most of this whom drools something about Germany, from the aftermath of WW1, to the unfortunate WW2, either dont know jack shit, witch is highly lightly, or is just throwing out this to make them self somewhat credibly because of using refrences witch is dripping with consensuses whom have nothing to do with what really happened.
    I could link to what the Russians are doing, but the overall stupidty is also infecting the Russian Gov and adminiitration, to the reality witch stil is an part of what Russia is to day, no pound intended, just to give you an hint, and what to expect into the near future.

    If you want to learn about an nation stil run by in the Stalinistian way, where even reseach orgs, ( like Forskning. nogo there are read for your self, if you doubt my humble rant) witch are founded by the Norwegian state, have articles done by shrinks, where they say that if you dont belive whatever the MSm says, or whatever the Gov do, you are indeed an person with sevear mental issues, the same people said the same about people whom suported Trump by the way, and the same MSM, aka VG have their own site where you can read about the truth and nothing but the truth, yeah, and again, if you dont belive or are, oh…. horror an conspiracy nutt, witch the reseach org. shrinks so eloquently stated it, since they are certifyed psycos, you are indeed and dangerous and delutional person, and in the comentary field in this last Stalinistic nation on this earth, the “norse” howls along.
    I am sorry, and must apologise the AmeriTards, since I belived they where resting alone on the peak of human stupdity, but the “vikings” are beating them to pulp.
    I agree with K. Hamsun, if you want to talk to idiots, come to Norway, beautiful nation with people dumb as bricks, not all of course, but mainly the Khazarian south, as an natural result of eons of inbreeding.

    I am in awe.

    In this times I will, since most people are home and have some time, to read an uh…. a book? if you stil know what that is, an briliant analogy of the present Norway, but this book was writen in the Bolshewik paradise called Sovjet, but the probelm is stil the same, read:
    Mikhail Bulgakovs, Hart of a Dog
    An master piece and with good humor as well, highly recomended, to you all.
    Have an nice day, and my hart goes to the Cubans, whom stil, despite everything, is an light in an otherwise dim world, you have my deepest respect.
    Take care


    • Astrid Watanabe

      I will read anything by Mikhail Bulgakov, thanks for reminding me. I threw out my tv years ago. Especially now is a good time for reading.