The world can’t wait for good news from Oxford, Serum Institute and AstraZeneca ⁠— but that is only the first step

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  • The University of Oxford might release early-stage human trial data on July 20, reported Reuters citing The Lancet medical journal.
  • University of Oxford’s coronavirus vaccine candidate is the most advanced vaccine candidate against COVID-19 under Phase II trial.
  • While the unproven vaccine is already being mass-produced, the data will help understand whether it is safe to use or not.
  • Even if it is proven to be a deterrent for COVID-19 virus, it would take a long time for the vaccine to be available for mass production and supply.

There is a lot of buzz around the coronavirus vaccine under trial at the University of Oxford. Reports suggest that there may be ‘good news’ soon but, whatever the result, this should not be a cue to throw caution to the wind. The mass production and supply of the vaccine may take a much longer time and saving lives from COVID-19 in the interim will be just as much a challenge as it is right now.

The University of Oxford, which is among the only three institutions in the world to start Phase III trials for coronavirus vaccine, might release early-stage human trial data on July 20, reported Reuters citing The Lancet medical journal.

“I am hearing there will be positive news soon (perhaps tomorrow) on initial trials of the Oxford Covid-19 vaccine that is backed by AstraZeneca and supported by tens of millions of pounds of government money. The first data is due to be published in the Lancet.” ITV’s political editor Robert Peston wrote.

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University of Oxford’s coronavirus vaccine candidate is the most advanced vaccine candidate against COVID-19 under Phase II trial — which involves thousands of participants in South Africa, UK, and Brazil. Oxford says the potential coronavirus vaccine could be ready by September.

Oxford has struck a deal with pharma giant Astra Zeneca to mass-produce the vaccine — and provide about 2 billion doses to the world if successful.

READ ALSO: These are the coronavirus vaccines under human trials right now

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According to Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, the Director and Founder of Biocon, even after the vaccine is approved, India may not be able to produce more than 10-20 million doses in the first year, which is a negligible amount considering India’s population.

“There are 26 million children born in India every year but we still struggle to vaccinate even 70% of them. How can we think that we can overnight go and vaccinate 1.4 billion people?, I don’t think vaccines is a major option for India until 2022,” Dr Ramanan Laxminarayan, Director CDDEP earlier told Business Insider India.

The scale of the experiment
As many as 1,102 participants were recruited to experiment with the vaccine in the UK in April. And after almost a month Profession Andrew Pollard, head of the Oxford vaccine Group said the clinical studies are “progressing very well.”
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While the unproven vaccine is already being mass-produced, the data will help understand whether it is safe to use or not. As many as 10,000 volunteers are being testing in Phase II/III clinical trials in the UK.

The promising results of the Oxford vaccine in its pre-clinical trial stage were supported by American businessman Bill Gates. Moreover, I ndian steel magnate Lakshmi Mittal too donated about £3.2 million pounds to support Oxford Jenner Institute.

Apart from this, the US-based biotech firm Moderna said on July 14 that it would enter the final stage of human trials for its COVID-19 vaccine on July 27 after the vaccine showed promising results.
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Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine will be in final stages of human trial starting July 27
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