Oxford University, which initiated UK’s largest and one of the promising COVID-19 vaccine projects, along with its development and manufacturing partner AstraZeneca, has started recruiting around 10,000 adults and children in Britain for trials of this experimental vaccine. The British-drugs and pharmaceuticals giant AstraZeneca had last week received a $1.2 billion funding commitment from the US for this project, which is currently considered hopeful in the fight against the pandemic.
The hospitals and medical research institutions in UK had commenced enrolling more than 10,000 subjects including adults and children, to try how effectively this vaccine candidate (ChAdOx1) responds in human being and also to confirm its safety profile, according to statements by Oxford University.
The University has also tied up with many other vaccine producers, including India’s Serum Institute, around the world as development and manufacturing partners to expedite the production in case it is found effective. Though the University had initially claimed its animal tests were successful, peer reviews found that it wasn’t fully effective in preventing the infection though it reduced severity in vaccinated animals. Immune responses from earlier coronavirus studies had suggested that the club-shaped spikes on the outer coats of coronavirus are a good target for a vaccine. The Oxford vaccine contains the genetic sequence of this surface spike protein inside the structure of the new vaccine candidate. According the University paper, after vaccination, this surface spike protein of the coronavirus is produced and this will prompt the immune system to attack the coronavirus if it infects the body later.