Phase 3 COVID-19 vaccine trial data by Christmas; Oxford researchers

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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While conversing on the latest results from the ongoing late-stage trials of AstraZeneca-Oxford COVID-19 vaccine candidate, Dr. Andrew Pollard, an expert in pediatric infection and immunity at Oxford revealed that the team expects to deliver results from the vaccine trials by Christmas. 

Dr. Pollard stated that even though the research slowed down a bit due to the low infection rates over the summer, Phase 3 trials are now collecting the data needed to report results as a renewed surge of the pandemic hits countries around the world.

Speaking to the UK regional media, Dr. Pollard expressed his optimism by sharing ” I think we’re getting close, and it’s definitely going to be before Christmas based on the progress.”

The pediatric infection and immunity expert revealed that results from the late-stage trials suggesting that the vaccine was well-tolerated and produced a strong immune response in people over 70 is an important milestone as oses often don’t work as well in older people.

Earlier, Oxford has published a peer-reviewed 560 people Phase 2 data in an international medical journal Lancet which also included results of 240 individuals who were over the age of 70.

While Phase 2 trails provide important preliminary data, researchers are waiting for the results of Phase 3 from the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine trials to show the world whether their vaccine is safe and effective.

Meanwhile, earlier this week US-based drugmakers Pfizer and Moderna reported preliminary results from late-stage trials showing that their COVID-19 vaccines were almost 95% effective.

Commenting on the highly ambitious race to have the first widely approved COVID-19 vaccine for mass vaccination, Dr. Pollard stated that there is no competition among the drugmakers as several vaccines will be needed to bring the global pandemic under control and allow life to return to normal.