Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine produces strong immune responses in older adults

HEALTH Coronavirus Vaccine

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These trial results from the University of Oxford, peer-reviewed in the Lancet, suggest that may not be a problem.

Hyderabad-based Biological E Ltd has also started early phases 1 and 2 human trials of its Covid-19 vaccine candidate, being developed with Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas, and US-based Dynavax Technologies Corp. Priority for the vaccine will be designed on the basis of scientific data.

Coronavirus – Fri Apr 17 2020
A vial of the Oxford vaccine

AZ said in a statement earlier this month that results from the phase III trials are expected later this year, depending on the COVID-19 infection rate in the communities where the studies are being conducted.

The UK government has already signed a supply deal with AZ for 100 million doses of its potential COVID-19 vaccine, which is dependent on whether the vaccine continues to prove effective in upcoming trial readouts. All that has heightened anticipation of clinical results for the AstraZeneca vaccine, with hopes it can complement rollouts of other shots in parts of the world that might not have immediate access to Pfizer's and Moderna's shots.

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Responses were "similar" across all age groups, the researchers said.

According to the researchers, volunteers in the trial demonstrated similar immune responses across all three age groups (18-55, 56-69, and 70 and over).

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Pollard said there is no competition between the various research teams, because several vaccines will be needed to bring the global pandemic under control and allow life to return to normal. Those positive outcomes were present in all age groups given low and standard doses. Antibody responses against the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein were induced in all age groups and were boosted and maintained at 28 days after booster vaccination, including in the 70 years and older group. Most were white nonsmokers.

"Our new study answers some of these questions about protecting older adults, but questions remain about effectiveness and length of protection, and we need to confirm our results in older adults with underlying conditions to ensure that our vaccine protects those most at risk of severe COVID-19 disease".

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