Oxford's Vaccine

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Good vaccine news just keeps on coming on the backs of really promising news. From the pfizer. Biontech and madonna now oxford astrazeneca have announced the preliminary results from their phase three trials which showed overall seventy percent efficacy as reminder madonna and visor biotechs. Vaccines both currently show around ninety. Five percent efficacy but seventy percent is still very solid. That's about where dr fauci had been saying. He'd be very pleased to see. But i overall seventy percent. Because there's a weird quirk of the oxford astrazeneca vaccine. That i as someone who is not an immunologist. Don't quite understand but hopefully we'll get more information on it in the coming days. Here's what i can tell you for now. The vaccine like the pfizer biontech one would need to be distributed in two doses however the first dose just needs to be half a dose for some reason. Doing a half dose on the first injection makes the whole vaccine overall more effective than if you got to hold doses quoting stat news. The preliminary results on the astrazeneca vaccine were based on a total one hundred. Thirty one covid nineteen cases in a study involving eleven thousand three hundred sixty three participants. The findings were perplexing to full doses of the vaccine appeared to be only sixty two percent effective at preventing disease while a half dose followed by a full dose was about ninety percent effective. That ladder analysis was conducted on a small subset of the study participants. Only two thousand seven hundred forty one a us based trial being supported by operation. Warp speed is testing the two full dose regimen. That may soon change. Astrazeneca plans to explore adding the half dose full dose regimen to its ongoing clinical trials in discussions with regulatory agencies spokesman told stat in an email and quotes and quoting from the new york times. The oxford scientists said they were still trying to understand why the vaccine was more effective at a smaller first dose. The first is supposed to prime the immune system while the second is supposed to boost its response while it seemed counter intuitive for a smaller i dose to be more effective. They said that strategy. More closely mimic. What happens with a real infection. End quotes peter openshaw professor of experimental medicine at imperial college. London explained to the associated. Press that vaccines. don't work. Like normal drugs where a higher dose produces more effects. The immune system is more complicated. Openshaw also notes that if indeed people do only need half a dose for one of the injections that's great news because it will be even cheaper to produce for more people. This was the vaccine candidate. That i was most excited about early on because it seemed like they kind of had a head start quoting the new york. Times astrazeneca's macos vaccine is designed to genetically altered in a dinner virus found in chimps. So that it harmlessly mimics the corona virus and provoke an immune response vaccine deploying. That technology has never won approval but the approach has been studied before notably in a small two thousand eighteen study of an experimental vaccine against the virus that causes middle east respiratory syndrome or mergers that viruses related to sars cov two the novel corona virus that causes covid nineteen so when covid nineteen emerged the team of scientists at oxford's jenner institute that had been leading the work on similar corona viruses. Had a head start once. The genetic code of sars cov two was published in early january. The oxford team sped to adapt their platform to the new corona virus and begin animal testing and quotes the other win in oxford. Astrazeneca's corner is unlike the pfizer. Biontech vaccine this latest one does not require any special refrigeration just standard storage and transportation temperatures of two eight degrees celsius or thirty six to forty six degrees fahrenheit and it can be stored for up to six months. The moderna vaccine requires cooler temperatures of negative four degrees fahrenheit but then can be stored at normal refrigeration temperatures after thawing in can be stored as such for a month. The pfizer biontech vaccine. Meanwhile requires dry. Ice to store at negative seventy degrees celsius or negative ninety four degrees fahrenheit s- that makes the oxford astrazeneca vaccine much more appealing for areas without the infrastructure or funding to sustain the pfizer. Biotech cold chain. And with that in mind. Astrazeneca is applying for early approval wherever it can as well as an emergency useless stained from the world health organization so that it can be made available in low income countries they plan to produce three billion doses next year and are committed to providing it at cost around the world through july. Twenty twenty one. The vaccine costs around three or four. Us dollars significantly less than the others late stage. Trials are continuing in the us. Japan russia south africa kenya and latin america and further trials are planned for other european and asian countries. So definitely more good news but watch this space for more

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