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Delighted over Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine’s efficacy: Adar Poonawalla

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“I am delighted to hear that Covishield, a low-cost, logistically manageable and soon to be widely available, COVID-19 vaccine, will offer protection up to 90% in one type of dosage regime and 62% in the other dosage regime. Further details on this will be provided,” Adar Poonawalla, CEO Serum Institute of India, said in a tweet on Monday.

Also read: Pfizer ends COVID-19 vaccine trial with 95% efficacy, to seek emergency-use authorisation

The tweet comes after reports that the vaccine developed by the University of Oxford stops 70% of people from developing COVID symptoms, as per a largescale trial.

The Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine is being made in partnership with the Serum Institute of India (SII).

While proposed COVID vaccines by other pharma majors Pfizer and Moderna have reportedly shown 95% protection, the Oxford vaccine is said to be cheaper, easier to store and transport.

On Monday, Oxford-AstraZeneca announced that one of the dosing might be 90% effective. “One dosing regimen (n=2,741) showed vaccine efficacy of 90% when AZD1222 was given as a half dose, followed by a full dose at least one month apart, and another dosing regimen (n=8,895) showed 62% efficacy when given as two full doses at least one month apart. The combined analysis from both dosing regimens (n=11,636) resulted in an average efficacy of 70%,” said Astrazeneca in its release. It added that out of all the participants, 131 contracted Covid-19, but none of them was serious. There was no need for hospitalization.”

Covishield can be stored, transported and handled at normal refrigerated conditions (2-8 degrees Celsius/ 36-46 degrees Fahrenheit) for at least six months and administered within existing healthcare settings, which is an advantage against Pfizer’s proposed vaccine that needs to be stored at minus 70 degree Celcius.

Also read: The Hindu Explains | Who are the top contenders in the race for a COVID-19 vaccine?

AstraZeneca added that it will now immediately prepare regulatory submission of the data to authorities around the world that have a framework in place for conditional or early approval.

“The Company will seek an emergency use listing from the World Health Organization for an accelerated pathway to vaccine availability in low-income countries. In parallel, the full analysis of the interim results is being submitted for publication in a peer-reviewed journal,” it added.

Professor Andrew Pollard, chief investigator of the Oxford Vaccine Trial at Oxford, said: “These findings show that we have an effective vaccine that will save many lives. We have found that one of our dosing regimens may be around 90% effective and if this dosing regime is used, more people could be vaccinated with planned vaccine supply. ”

Pascal Soriot, CEO of AstraZeneca, also said this vaccine’s efficacy and safety confirm that it will be highly effective against COVID-19 and will have an immediate impact on this public health emergency.

The Hindu Explains | What do we know about Russia’s COVID-19 vaccine candidate Sputnik V?

“Furthermore, the vaccine’s simple supply chain and our no-profit pledge and commitment to Page 2 of 3 broad, equitable and timely access means it will be affordable and globally available, supplying hundreds of millions of doses on approval,” he added.

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Printable version | Jan 18, 2021 7:51:55 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/science/delighted-over-oxford-astrazeneca-vaccines-efficacy-adar-poonawalla/article33162413.ece

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