Oxford jab triggers robust immune response in elderly1 min read . Updated: 19 Nov 2020, 11:21 PM IST
Older adults are at higher risk of infection and death from covid-19, and are a priority for immunization whenever a final vaccine emerges from the ongoing trials
NEW DELHI : The coronavirus vaccine under development at the University of Oxford triggers a robust immune response in elderly adults, findings published in The Lancet journal said, signalling potential relief for one of the groups most vulnerable to the illness.
Older adults are at higher risk of infection and death from covid-19, and are a priority for immunization whenever a final vaccine emerges from the ongoing trials.
Reporting on data from a Phase II trial of the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine, the study showed that volunteers in the trial demonstrated similar neutralizing antibody titres, and T cell responses across all three age groups (18-55, 56-79 and 70+). The data is consistent with the Phase I data reported for healthy adults aged 18-55 earlier this year, University of Oxford said.
The study aimed to assess the safety of the vaccine and the immune responses of participants in different age groups following vaccination. “It is important to assess how well the vaccine works in older people, as these age groups are more severely affected by covid-19 disease. Sometimes vaccines are less effective in older people, so it is important to find out at an early stage how well the immune system responds to the vaccine in those over the age of 55," University of Oxford said.
The main objectives of the trial, including whether the vaccine can prevent covid-19 disease, will be reported at a later date, it said. Up to 560 participants have been recruited at Oxford and Southampton study sites.
“There were no safety concerns associated with the vaccine and no unexpected symptoms shown in those participants who received it. The safety profile was similar to that seen in the Phase I study and in other similar vaccines, including pain and tenderness at the injection site, and flu-like symptoms such as headache, fever and muscle aches," said the researchers.
“Fewer adverse events were reported in the older age groups than in the 18-55 year olds; adverse reactions reduced as age increased. Adverse events were also less common after the booster dose compared with the initial vaccination. As we compared two different doses in this study, we also saw that there were fewer adverse reactions in those who received the lower dose of the vaccine. No severe adverse events related to the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine were reported," they said.