Covid-19: Oxford University vaccine is highly effective

Grant Boone
November 25, 2020

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Officials in the health ministry pointed out that the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine is markedly cheaper and is estimated to cost at about $2.50 a dose.

Three vaccines - Pfizer-BioNTech, Sputnik and Moderna - have already reported good preliminary data from phase three trials, with one suggesting 94 per cent of over-65s could be protected from Covid-19.

The Federal Government has committed to buying 33.8 million doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, with 3.8 million of them to be imported from overseas manufacturing plants.

"According to the results of clinical trials, this vaccine could be highly effective against Covid-19".

Forty million doses of that vaccine have been bought by the United Kingdom, with rollout potentially starting in early December if the jab is given the green light by regulators.

Emergency authorisation for the vaccine by the Indian regulator will be the first step in ensuring its administration based on a priority list, starting with frontline healthcare workers.

No serious adverse health events related to the ChAdOx1 nCov-2019 vaccine were seen in the participants.

Earlier on Thursday, he said he expected Phase III data to be released by Christmas.

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Pollard said it's too soon to say for sure whether there are real differences in the effectiveness of the Oxford-AstraZeneca shot and rival vaccines.

The Oxford Vaccine Group's director, Andrew Pollard, said in a media briefing there were "lots of cases" of infections in its Phase III trial in Britain, Brazil and South Africa.

"It's exciting to see these results because all the vaccines we're testing here in Pittsburgh are using the spike protein".

The study, by Monash University's Department of Immunology and Pathology and Alfred Research Alliance, uncovered a memory B cell which "remembers" the virus and triggers the production of protective antibodies if re-exposed.

A health worker injects a person during clinical trials for a Covid-19 vaccine at Research Centers of America in Hollywood, Florida, on September 9, 2020.

The study also found the vaccine, being developed with AstraZeneca, was less likely to cause local reactions at the injection site and symptoms on the day of vaccination in older adults than in the younger group.

Thirteen serious adverse events occurred during the study period as of October 26; however, none were linked to the study's vaccine.

The authors note some limitations to their study, including that the participants in the oldest age group had an average age of 73-74 and few underlying health conditions, so they may not be representative of the general older population, including those living in residential care settings or aged over 80.

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