Oxford COVID-19 Vaccine trials in India delayed over safety approvals – Report

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Oxford COVID-19 vaccine trials in India delayed over safety approvals
Oxford COVID-19 vaccine trials in India delayed over safety approvals

The trials were to commence in the first week of September, but currently awaits approval for safety of the first 100 participants recruited till now, from the Data Safety and Monitoring Board. 

Oxford COVID-19 Vaccine

One of the most promising and hopeful candidates when it comes to the coronavirus pandemic and disease is the Oxford-Astrazeneca produced vaccine candidate, dubbed Covishield in India. Covishield is one of the three vaccine candidates undergoing trials in the country, apart from Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin, and Zydus Cadila’s ZCOV-D. However, reports have now suggested that the trials of Oxford’s Covishield in India may be delayed over safety approvals.

According to a report by the IANS, clinical trials of Covishield that were expected to start at the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research in Chandigarh have been delayed by at least a week.

The trials were to commence in the first week of September, but currently awaits approval for safety of the first 100 participants recruited till now, from the Data Safety and Monitoring Board. 

PGIMER has said that it received about 400 volunteers for the trials, out of which 253 have been administered the vaccine so far. The recruitment of candidates now stays on hold, until further notice. 

17 sites, across the country, were selected for the trials of Oxford’s vaccine candidate in India. PGIMER is one of those 17 sites and will participate in the second and third phase trials of the vaccine. 

Oxford-AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine is being produced by the Serum Institute of India. Oxford vaccine has been speculated as being the first vaccine that may be available to Indians, against the novel coronavirus.

Adar Poonawalla, who heads the Serum Institute of India, is confident that India will have a vaccine against COVID-19 by the end of the year. 

Meanwhile, Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin is also set to begin phase 2 trials on Monday, reports have said.

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