After a brief halt, Oxford University’s COVID-19 vaccine candidate has been cleared by UK authorities to resume clinical trials.
An independent safety review committee and the UK regulator, the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) gave the approval to the AstraZeneca co-developed vaccine candidate as it was deemed safe to continue.
British-Swedish vaccine maker said that “The UK committee has concluded its investigations and recommended to the MHRA that trials in the UK are safe to resume.”
Oxford University said in a statement that the UK regulator had recommended that the trials resume after an independent review of the safety data.
The Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine candidate is seen as one of the most promising cures under work to tackle the pandemic after its phase 1 and 2 trails revealed promising results.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), nearly 180 vaccine candidates are being tested around the world but none has yet completed clinical trials.
Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 Vaccine
AZD1222 was co-invented by the University of Oxford and its spin-out company, Vaccitech. It uses a replication-deficient chimpanzee viral vector based on a weakened version of a common cold virus (adenovirus) that causes infections in chimpanzees and contains the genetic material of the SARS-CoV-2 virus spike protein.
After vaccination, the surface spike protein is produced, priming the immune system to attack the SARS-CoV-2 virus if it later infects the body.