Oxford confirms COVID-19 vaccine with AstraZeneca works against UK variant

WION Web Team
London, London, United Kingdom Published: Feb 05, 2021, 07:28 PM(IST)

(File image) Photograph:( AFP )

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Earlier in the day, British regulators also received extra trial data from AstraZeneca that supports their view that the vaccine was effective in the elderly.

AstraZeneca and Oxford University's COVID-19 vaccine has similar efficacy against the variant first identified in Kent, southern England, as previously circulating strains, the university said on Friday.

The findings, released in a preprint paper on Friday, also detailed recent analysis showing that vaccination with the shot results in a reduction in the duration of shedding and viral load. This, in turn, may translate into a reduced transmission of the disease, Oxford University said.

"Data from our trials of the ChAdOx1 vaccine in the United Kingdom indicate that the vaccine not only protects against the original pandemic virus, but also protects against the novel variant, B.1.1.7, which caused the surge in disease from the end of 2020 across the UK," said Andrew Pollard, Chief Investigator on the Oxford vaccine trial.

Sarah Gilbert, co-developer of the vaccine, said that, although the vaccine had efficacy against the UK variant, it might need to be adapted for a future variant.

Earlier in the day, British regulators also received extra trial data from AstraZeneca that supports their view that the vaccine was effective in the elderly.

Britain has been rolling out the shot among all age groups after the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) was the first regulator to approve it in December, but some other European countries have said more data is needed before it is given to those over 65.

The variant, first identified in Kent, southern England, is more easily transmissible, prompting many countries to restrict travel to Britain.

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