79% effective in US trial

A health worker is preparing a dose of Oxford / AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine at the vaccination center set up on 26 January 2021 at Brighton Center in Brighton, South of England.

Ben Stensall | AFP | Getty Images

LONDON – The findings of a large American trial showed that the coronavirus vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford is 79% effective in preventing symptomatic diseases and 100% effective against serious diseases and hospitalization.

The vaccine safety and efficacy analysis, published on Monday, was based on 32,449 participants from a phase 3 trial.

In comparison, Moderna’s vaccine has been found to be more than 94% effective in preventing Covid, and Pfizer-BioNTech’s vaccine is 95% effective.

AstraZeneca said it will continue to analyze the data and prepare for the primary analysis to be submitted to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in the coming weeks for emergency clearance.

This comes shortly after a spate of countries temporarily suspended the use of the shot following reports of blood clots in some vaccines. Health experts sharply criticized the move, citing a lack of data, while analysts expressed concern about the impact on vaccine intake as the virus continues to spread.

Germany, France, Italy and Spain are among those who have resumed use of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, after the European drug regulator said the initial investigation into possible side effects concluded that the shot was safe and effective.

The World Health Organization and the International Association for Thrombosis and Hemostasis have recommended that countries continue to use the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine.

AstraZeneca said in a release on Monday that an independent board did not identify any safety issues related to the shot. They also performed a specific review of blood clots as well as cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST), an extremely rare blood clot in the brain, with the help of an independent neurologist.

The Data Security Council “found no increased risk of thrombosis or thrombotic events among the 21,583 participants who received at least one dose of the vaccine. The specific search for CVST found no events in this trial not found. “

AstraZeneca shares traded nearly 1% in the early morning trades.

A much-needed additional vaccination option

Ann Falsey, professor of medicine at the University of Rochester School of Medicine, USA, and co-principal investigator for the trial, said: “This analysis validates the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine as a much-needed additional vaccination option, providing confidence that adults of all ages can benefit from protection against the virus. ‘

The pharmaceutical giant said the shot is well tolerated and that its effectiveness is commensurate with ethnicity and age.

The Oxford-AstraZeneca shot was 80% effective in preventing Covid in participants 65 years of age and older.

A healthcare worker received the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine at Chang Gung Memorial Hospital in Taipei, Taiwan, on Monday, March 22, 2021. Taiwan began vaccinating the coronavirus today.

Hwa Cheng | Bloomberg | Getty Images

“These results contribute to the growing body of evidence showing that this vaccine is well tolerated and highly effective against all seriousness of COVID-19 and in all age groups,” said Mene Pangalos, executive vice president of BioPharmaceuticals R&D at AstraZeneca , said in a statement. .

“We are confident that this vaccine can play an important role in protecting millions of people worldwide against this deadly virus,” Pangalos said.

Among the participants in the interim analysis, about 20% were 65 years and older, while about 60% had comorbidities associated with an increased risk of progression of severe Covid, such as diabetes or heart disease.

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