Covid-19 vaccine from Oxford, AstraZeneca shows promising response

Covid-19 vaccine from Oxford, AstraZeneca shows promising response
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The Covid-19 vaccine from Oxford University and AstraZeneca shows promising response in an early-stage human trial, based on a newly released data in the medical journal The Lancet.

The experimental vaccine is being called by Oxford and AstraZeneca researchers ChAdOx1 nCoV-19. The research involves genetic material from the coronavirus with a modified adenovirus which could trigger infections in chimpanzees. The phase one trial involved over 1,000 participants. AstraZeneca’s shares dropped by about 3% in morning trading.

The trial found that the coronavirus vaccine manifested both antibodies and killer T-cells to fight the infection. The researchers also detected neutralizing antibodies in participants after 28 days.

The Covid-19 vaccine made by Oxford and AstraZeneca was said to be well-tolerated. They did not find any serious adverse events, while fatigue and headache were the most common symptoms. Pain at the injection site, fever, muscle ache, and chills were the most common side effects.

According to Professor Adrian Hill, director of Oxford University’s Jenner Institute, the strong immune response suggests that the vaccine is more likely to give protection against the virus, though nothing is certain. Scientists aim to start human trials in the US in the following weeks.

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Human trials

“We are using single-dose and two-dose of the vaccine,” he told “Worldwide Exchange.” “It looks like both give useful immune responses even though after two doses we see stronger immune responses. And to keep following these individuals and start trials elsewhere. Hopefully in the U.S. in the next few weeks.”

According to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University, the potential vaccine by Oxford and AstraZeneca is one of at least 100 vaccines being developed worldwide for Covid-19. There are now more than 14 million coronavirus cases across the world and a death toll of least 606,206. The World Health Organization reported that at least 23 of them are already in human trials.

Biotech firm Moderna presented significant data on its potential coronavirus vaccine trial, saying it produced a “robust” immune response. That trial involved 45 healthy participants and was conducted by the National Institutes of Health.

Meanwhile, AstraZeneca collaborates with industry partners in manufacturing and distributing two billion doses of the vaccine with Oxford.

Booster

However, White House health advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci said that the coronavirus vaccine may require a booster for longer protection.

He said that the effect of the potential vaccine on individuals might be short-lived.

Antibodies can help identify how effective a vaccine is, how often a person might need to receive it, or a booster for longer protection.

Dr. Fauci, the director of the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, was asked about how long antibodies can protect people from infection. He said, “we do not know.”

“With this spike protein that’s being presented in the way that we do it with primes and in some cases boosts, we’re going to assume that there’s a degree of protection, but we have to assume that it’s going to be finite,” he noted during a Q&A discussion with Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health. “It’s not going to be like a measles vaccine.”

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