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Pascal Soriot, chief executive officer of pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca (Reuters)
Pascal Soriot, chief executive officer of pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca (Reuters)

AstraZeneca likely to run additional global Covid-19 vaccine trial, CEO says

  • AstraZeneca's new trial would be run instead of adding an arm to an ongoing US trial and would evaluate a lower dosage that performed better than a full amount in Astra’s studies
  • The company’s acknowledgment that the lower level was given in error fuelled concerns

FILE PHOTO: Vials with a sticker reading,
FILE PHOTO: Vials with a sticker reading, "COVID-19 / Coronavirus vaccine / Injection only" and a medical syringe are seen in front of a displayed AstraZeneca logo in this illustration taken October 31, 2020. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo (REUTERS)

AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine safe, Indian trials progressing smoothly: SII

  • The comments came after AstraZeneca and Oxford University acknowledged a manufacturing error that is raising questions about preliminary results of their experimental COVID-19 vaccine
  • Meanwhile, PM Modi will on Saturday visit Serum Institute to review the vaccine production

A test tube labeled with the vaccine is seen in front of AstraZeneca logo  (Reuters)
A test tube labeled with the vaccine is seen in front of AstraZeneca logo (Reuters)

AstraZeneca-Oxford Covid vaccine faces more questions after manufacturing error

  • In a later statement, Oxford said a difference in manufacturing processes led to some participants being given a half dose instead of full one
  • Oxford said that when it was apparent that a lower dose was used, it was discussed with regulators, and agreement was reached to push ahead with two regimens

Astra shares rose 0.5% Thursday after slumping 6.2% earlier in the week. (Photo: Reuters)
German Chancellor Angela Merkel delivers a speech during a session at the lower house of parliament today
FILE - In this Wednesday, Aug. 5, 2020 file photo, senior Clinical Research Nurse Ajithkumar Sukumaran prepares the COVID 19 vaccine to administer to a volunteer, at a clinic in London. The British government on Thursday, Sept. 24, 2020 says it may take part in a study that tries to deliberately infect volunteers who have been given an experimental vaccine against the coronavirus in an effort to more quickly determine if the vaccine works. The approach, called a challenge study, is risky but proponents think it may produce results faster than typical studies, which wait to see if volunteers who have been given an experimental treatment or a dummy version get sick.  (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth, File) (AP)
FILE - In this Wednesday, Aug. 5, 2020 file photo, senior Clinical Research Nurse Ajithkumar Sukumaran prepares the COVID 19 vaccine to administer to a volunteer, at a clinic in London. The British government on Thursday, Sept. 24, 2020 says it may take part in a study that tries to deliberately infect volunteers who have been given an experimental vaccine against the coronavirus in an effort to more quickly determine if the vaccine works. The approach, called a challenge study, is risky but proponents think it may produce results faster than typical studies, which wait to see if volunteers who have been given an experimental treatment or a dummy version get sick. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth, File) (AP)

When and how will covid-19 vaccines become available?

If regulators approve any of the vaccines in coming weeks, the companies have said distribution could begin almost immediately with governments around the world to decide who gets them and in what order. The following is an outline of the process

BioNTech is also working with US pharma giant Pfizer on the vaccine and the partners said last week they were hoping to win approval in the US and Europe this year (Photo: AP)
BioNTech is also working with US pharma giant Pfizer on the vaccine and the partners said last week they were hoping to win approval in the US and Europe this year (Photo: AP)

BioNTech, Fosun start Phase II trial of covid-19 vaccine in China

The vaccine, known as BNT162b2, will be tested on volunteers at the Jiangsu Provincial Center for Disease Control and Prevention to assess safety and immunogenicity, eyeing future approval in China

Covid vaccine: CNBG has vaccine supply agreements with several developing countries
(Photo: Bloomberg)
Prime Minister Narendra Modi (ANI)
Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray at a video conference with Prime Minister Narendra Modi
Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray at a video conference with Prime Minister Narendra Modi

In constant touch with Serum CEO to track vaccine development: Uddhav tells Modi

  • Maharashtra CM informed PM Modi that a task force has been set up to manage distribution and vaccination in the state
  • Fearing a Covid surge, the state had on Monday announced fresh set of rules for passengers coming from four states with higher Covid caseload

States have been asked to accelerate the process of identifying frontline healthcare workers (AP)
States have been asked to accelerate the process of identifying frontline healthcare workers (AP)

Global covid-19 caseload tops 59 million

  • The US, India and Brazil remain the top three countries in terms of the total number of confirmed coronavirus cases, followed by France and Russia

Oxford Vaccine Group researchers in a laboratory in Oxford, England. (AP)
Oxford Vaccine Group researchers in a laboratory in Oxford, England. (AP)

How Oxford University made the breakthrough in covid vaccine

Oxford vaccinologists were exhilarated on Monday when drugmaker AstraZeneca, with whom they developed the shot, announced that it could be around 90% effective, citing data from late-stage trials

FILE PHOTO: A test tube labeled with the vaccine is seen in front of AstraZeneca logo in this illustration taken, September 9, 2020. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/File Photo/File Photo (REUTERS)
FILE PHOTO: A test tube labeled with the vaccine is seen in front of AstraZeneca logo in this illustration taken, September 9, 2020. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/File Photo/File Photo (REUTERS)

AstraZeneca shot that works better in smaller doses raises questions

  • A lower dose producing a better result has many scratching their heads
  • The puzzling part about AstraZeneca’s results was that bigger doses were less efficacious

Serum Institute chief executive officer Adar Poonawalla.  (Mint)
Serum Institute chief executive officer Adar Poonawalla. (Mint)

India first priority for AstraZeneca/Oxford vaccine delivery: Serum Institute

  • The Oxford vaccine can be transported easily at normal refrigerator temperatures -- unlike some of the other candidates, which require extremely cold storage
  • The chief executive of the Serum Institute of India, Adar Poonawalla, said the manufacturer has already produced 40 million doses of the vaccine so far

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization (AP)
Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine jab achieves efficacy of up to 90% (Illustration: AFP)
AstraZeneca vaccine (Photo: Reuters)
(representational image) (AP)
The Serum Institute of India, the world’s largest producer of vaccines, is aiming to have 100 million doses ready by December. (Photo: AFP)
The Serum Institute of India, the world’s largest producer of vaccines, is aiming to have 100 million doses ready by December. (Photo: AFP)

Astra-Oxford covid vaccine: Doses could be in short supply

More will be on tap if AstraZeneca wins approval for a reduced dosing regime of a half shot followed by regular one, which was more effective than a full two-shot dosage in the results published Monday

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