Netanyahu: Israel to ink deal with AstraZeneca for millions of vaccines

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A coronavirus vaccine created by a collaboration between drugmaker AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford is showing results that it is safe and triggers a similar immune response among adults of all ages, according to preliminary results of their phase 2 study.

Older adults have an increased risk of COVID-19, so it's crucial that vaccines against the disease are effective in this age group.

The strong immune response detected in older people is important because vaccines often don't work as well in that cohort, Pollard said. However, Sinopharm said that the data from large-scale, late-stage clinical trials for its unit's COVID-19 vaccine are "better than expected".

The trial involved 560 adult volunteers, with 240 of them over the age of 70.

The vaccine also induced a specific antibody response to the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein at 28 days after a single dose across all age groups.

Ramasamy told The Guardian that the "robust antibody and T-cell responses" they saw in the group of older people were encouraging.

"The populations at greatest risk of serious COVID-19 disease include people with existing health conditions and older adults".

The UK government has already signed a supply deal with AZ for 100 million doses of its potential COVID-19 vaccine, which is dependent on whether the vaccine continues to prove effective in upcoming trial readouts.

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The immune responses reported in the study don't prove that the vaccine protects against infection with the coronavirus.

The results follow news this month from Pfizer Inc and BioNTech and from Moderna, as well as from Russian Federation, of experimental vaccines proving more than 90% effective, based on interim data from large, late-stage trials.

However, participants from a range of backgrounds, countries and ethnicities are being included in the phase 3 trial of the vaccine.

"This is a historic agreement led by the company's local representation that will enable access to the vaccine for millions of Israeli citizens", said Ohad Goldberg, chief executive of AstraZeneca Israel.

The vaccine would be priced between $5-$6 in the retail market, but the Indian government would get it for much less, because they would buy it bulk, Poonawaala said.

According to Stepanov, 10 potential vaccines in the world are now at the last stage of research.

Scientists have reported progress in developing a coronavirus vaccine. Even after vaccines are approved by regulators, drugmakers and public health officials still face the task of producing billions of doses and administering them to people around the world.

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