Oxford Coronavirus Vaccine Shows 'Extremely Promising' Results And Is 'Safe'

by Julie Scagell
Daniel Chetroni / Getty

The vaccine did not show any dangerous side effects thus far

A vaccine developed by the University of Oxford in England is showing “promising” results, but scientists involved say it’s too soon to know if it will protect a wider population. Additional trials are now underway to understand if the injection, which helps the body to make antibodies and T-cells that can fight against coronavirus, will have similar results.

According to results published in The Lancet, the early-stage trial showed the vaccine called ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 is “safe, causes few side effects, and induces strong immune responses.” The vaccine is made from a virus that causes the common cold in chimpanzees, then its reengineered so as to not cause harm in humans and to give it more of a coronavirus structure. This means the vaccine resembles the coronavirus and will allow the bodies’ immune system to learn how to fight it. There are dozens of trials happening around the globe — finding one that works is of critical importance.

The study trialed 1,077 healthy adults between April 23 and May 21 and found participants making antibodies and white blood cells that can fight COVID-19. To date, the vaccine hasn’t shown any dangerous side effects, but 70 percent of people reported a fever or headache.

Professor Sarah Gilbert, from the University of Oxford, UK, said: “There is still much work to be done before we can confirm if our vaccine will help manage the COVID-19 pandemic, but these early results hold promise.”

Professor Andrew Pollard, also a part of the research group, told the BBC: “We’re really pleased with the results published today as we’re seeing both neutralizing antibodies and T-cells. They’re extremely promising and we believe the type of response that may be associated with protection. But the key question everyone wants to know is does the vaccine work, does it offer protection… and we’re in a waiting game.”

The UK government has already ordered 100 million doses of the vaccine.

As trials continue, there are more than 10,000 people in the UK who will participate in the next round, as well as a large trial involving 30,000 people in the U.S., 2,000 in South Africa, and 5,000 in Brazil.

According to the BBC, this vaccine, if proven to be effective in larger trials, may be available by the end of this year but won’t be widely available until later in 2021. Healthcare workers and others deemed essential workers will be first in line to receive the vaccine, as well as those at high-risk like the elderly and those who are have compromised.

In the U.S., there are currently 3.9 million cases reported and 143,000 deaths from the virus. Globally, over a 24-hour period, nearly 260,000 new coronavirus cases — a new record — was reported on Saturday and 7,360 new fatalities were reported. This is the highest one-day increase since May, according to John’s Hopkins University.

HT/Huffington Post

Information about COVID-19 is rapidly changing, and Scary Mommy is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. With news being updated so frequently, some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For this reason, we are encouraging readers to use online resources from local public health departments, the Centers for Disease Control, and the World Health Organization to remain as informed as possible.