Ox­ford virus vac­cine trial enters phase 2

Hindustan Times (Ranchi) - - Front Page - HT Cor­re­spon­dent ■ let­ters@hin­dus­tan­times.com

LON­DON: The widely fol­lowed tri­als for a coron­avirus dis­ease (Covid-19) vac­cine at the Univer­sity of Ox­ford were de­scribed on Fri­day as pro­gress­ing “very well”, with ex­perts mov­ing to the next phase af­ter ini­ti­at­ing the trial in April, when over 1,000 im­mu­ni­sa­tions by its can­di­date vac­cine were com­pleted.

The next phase in­volves en­rolling up to 10,260 adults and chil­dren to as­sess the im­mune re­sponse to the vac­cine in peo­ple of dif­fer­ent ages and as­sess if there is a vari­a­tion.

An­drew Pol­lard, head of the Ox­ford Vac­cine Group, said: “The clin­i­cal stud­ies are pro­gress­ing very well and we are now ini­ti­at­ing stud­ies to eval­u­ate how well the vac­cine in­duces im­mune re­sponses in older adults, and to test whether it can pro­vide pro­tec­tion in the wider pop­u­la­tion”.

Ini­tial re­sults are ex­pected by Septem­ber. Phase III part of the study in­volves as­sess­ing how the vac­cine works in a large num­ber of peo­ple over the age of 18. This group will as­sess how well the vac­cine works to pre­vent peo­ple from be­com­ing in­fected and un­well with Covid-19.

Adult par­tic­i­pants in both the phase II and phase III groups will be ran­domised to re­ceive one or two doses of ei­ther the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vac­cine or a li­censed vac­cine that will be used as a ‘con­trol’ for com­par­i­son.

The tri­als for a coron­avirus vac­cine at the Univer­sity of Ox­ford were de­scribed on Fri­day as pro­gress­ing “very well”, with ex­perts mov­ing to the next phase af­ter ini­ti­at­ing the trial in April, when more than 1,000 im­mu­ni­sa­tions of its can­di­date vac­cine were com­pleted.

The next phase in­volves en­rolling up to 10,260 adults and chil­dren to as­sess the im­mune re­sponse to the vac­cine in peo­ple of dif­fer­ent ages, to find out if there is vari­a­tion in how well the im­mune sys­tem re­sponds in older peo­ple or chil­dren.

An­drew Pol­lard, head of the Ox­ford Vac­cine Group, said, “The clin­i­cal stud­ies are pro­gress­ing very well and we are now ini­ti­at­ing stud­ies to eval­u­ate how well the vac­cine in­duces im­mune re­sponses in older adults, and to test whether it can pro­vide pro­tec­tion in the wider pop­u­la­tion.”

Ini­tial re­sults are ex­pected by Septem­ber. The third phase of the trial will in­volve as­sess­ing how the vac­cine works in a large num­ber of peo­ple over 18 years of age. This group will as­sess how well the vac­cine works to pre­vent peo­ple from be­com­ing in­fected and un­well with Covid-19.

Sarah Gil­bert, pro­fes­sor of vac­ci­nol­ogy at the Jen­ner

In­sti­tute, said, “The vac­cine trial team has been work­ing hard on as­sess­ing the safety and im­muno­genic­ity of ChAdOx1 nCoV-19, and pre­par­ing to as­sess vac­cine ef­fi­cacy.”

Gil­bert added, “We’ve had a lot of in­ter­est al­ready from peo­ple over the age of 55 years who were not el­i­gi­ble to take part in the phase I study, and we will now be able to in­clude older age groups to con­tinue the vac­cine as­sess­ment.”

Adult par­tic­i­pants in both the Phase II and Phase III groups will be ran­domised to re­ceive one or two doses of ei­ther the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vac­cine or a li­censed vac­cine (MenACWY) that will be used for com­par­i­son.

AFP

■ Po­lice ar­rive at a rally where peo­ple were protest­ing lock­downs and vac­ci­na­tion drives, in Hyde Park, Lon­don.

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