Oxford’s COVID-19 vaccine effective in elderly people: Study finds

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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COVID Vaccine
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According to the findings from a recent study, COVID-19 vaccine developed by UK’s Oxford University produced a robust immune response in elderly people.

The vaccine developed by the University of Oxford in association with the UK-based pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca has generated protective antibodies and T-cells in older age groups, according to studies.

The highest risk of the novel coronavirus, that has infected nearly 7.91 million people worldwide, is seen to be experienced by elderly people.

Findings on immunogenicity blood tests carried out on a subset of older participants results released earlier in July this year had found that in healthy adults aged 18-55 years, the vaccine produced “robust immune responses,” the study said.

In the race to curb the global pandemic, the COVID-19 vaccine from Oxford and AstraZeneca is considered a frontrunner and the results of the trials are being closely monitored around the world.

Meanwhile, following approval by regulators, AstraZeneca has resumed the US trial of its COVID-19 experimental vaccine recently. After a report of a disease in a participant of the company’s UK trial, AstraZeneca had suspended its US trial in September.

Further, the news of a trial participant’s death in Brazil had raised more concerns while later reports suggested that the participant was not given the Oxford vaccine. These incidents had raised questions about one of the fastest-moving shots’ prospects and demonstrated the challenges facing researchers when developing a vaccine.

As it moves closer to announcing early results from a late-stage clinical trial, the British-Swedish drugmaker has signed many supply and distribution agreements with businesses and governments around the world.

The Oxford COVID-19 vaccine, called AZD1222 or ChAdOx1 nCoV-19, is a recombinant viral vector vaccine. It uses a weakened version of a common chimpanzee cold virus that encodes instructions to produce an immune response and prevent infection from the novel coronavirus.

The vaccine is currently under trial in the US, UK India, Brazil and South Africa.

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