British regulator approves Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine

WION Web Team
New Delhi, India Published: Dec 30, 2020, 12:33 PM(IST)

A test tube labeled with the vaccine is seen in front of AstraZeneca logo in this illustration taken, September 9, 2020 Photograph:( Reuters )

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The United Kingdom on Wednesday approved the COVID-19 vaccine developed by the University of Oxford, and AstraZeneca for use in the country

The United Kingdom on Wednesday approved the COVID-19 vaccine developed by the University of Oxford, and AstraZeneca for use in the country, paving way for further vaccination.

Earlier, the UK had become the first country to approve Pfizer-BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine, which is now being administered to people around the world.

This approval means that Britain would upgrade its vaccination capability. The country has ordered 100 million doses of the vaccine from the manufacturer - AstraZeneca, and it's enough to vaccinate 50 million people in the country.

Also read: India to approve AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine soon: Adar Poonawalla

The vaccine was developed in the first few months of 2020, and was tested on the first volunteer in April. Since then, thousands have participated in the trials.

Since the approval of the Pfizer jab in December, over 600,000 people have received the vaccine in the country.

Experts have now turned their attention to making sure the existing vaccines work against the new variant too. Considering the same, AstraZeneca chief executive, Pascal Soriot, said his team of researchers are almost sure that the Oxford vaccine will be able to fight against the novel coronavirus.

he said more tests need to be performed to be sure about this. "So far, we think the vaccine should remain effective. But we can’t be sure, so we’re going to test that," Soriot said.

Also read: AstraZeneca chief claims vaccine works against new strain of coronavirus

Hailing it as a "winning formula", Soriot thanked the team of researchers and said he hopes it will be able to contain the new variant of the virus found in several countries such as the UK, South Africa, Italy, etc.

"We think we have figured out the winning formula and how to get efficacy that, after two doses, is up there with everybody else," Soriot said, refusing to reveal any more information before it is officially published.

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