AstraZeneca-Oxford coronavirus vaccine trial paused after one volunteer falls sick
New Delhi : Pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca on Tuesday announced that they have voluntarily stopped the trials of its coronavirus vaccine after one of its volunteers developed an unexpected illness.
The company, which is developing the drug alongside the University of Oxford, is a frontrunner in the global race for a Covid-19 vaccine.
"As part of the ongoing randomized, controlled global trials of the Oxford coronavirus vaccine, our standard review process was triggered and we voluntarily paused vaccination to allow review of safety data by an independent committee," a spokesperson said.
"This is a routine action which has to happen whenever there is a potentially unexplained illness in one of the trials, while it is investigated, ensuring we maintain the integrity of the trials."
The statement added that in terms of large trials, illness may happen sometimes but it should be investigated separately.
"We are working to expedite the review of the single event to minimise any potential impact on the trial timeline," the spokesperson added.
In the initial reports it has not been revealed that the patient belongs to which region and what is the severity of the illness.
AstraZeneca is one of nine companies currently in late-stage Phase 3 trials for their vaccine candidates.
In the US, the company began enrolling 30,000 volunteers across dozens of sites on August 31.
The vaccine, called AZD1222, uses a weakened version of a common cold causing adenovirus that has been engineered to code for the spike protein that the novel coronavirus uses to invade cells.