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Wednesday, June 03, 2020

Children, adults over 70 to now be included in COVID-19 vaccine clinical trials

The second phase of COVID-19 vaccine trials by the University of Oxford aims to assess the immune response to the vaccine in people of different age groups

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Published: May 22, 2020 4:43:06 pm
coronavirus vaccine, coronavirus vaccine trial, covid 19 vaccine trial, coronavirus cases, indian express In this March 16, 2020, file photo, Neal Browning receives a shot in the first-stage safety study clinical trial of a potential vaccine for COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus, at the Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren/File)

More than 10,200 people — including children between the ages of five and 12 and adults over 70 — will be enrolled for the second phase of clinical trials to develop a vaccine for the prevention of COVID-19, the University of Oxford has said in a statement.

The first phase of trials was initiated in April and involved 1,000 healthy adults aged 55 and under. While a trial of the vaccine on monkeys was allegedly successfully completed, the scientists behind the vaccine have said that this does not confirm whether it will work on humans.

The second phase of the study aims to assess the immune response to the vaccine in people of different age groups. The third phase will judge the effectiveness of the vaccine in a large number of people over the age of 18, researchers at the University of Oxford have said.

“’The COVID-19 vaccine trial team have been working hard on assessing the safety and immunogenicity of ChAdOx1 nCoV-19, and preparing to assess vaccine efficacy. We have had a lot of interest already from people over the age of 55 years who were not eligible to take part in the phase I study,” said Sarah Gilbert, professor of vaccinology at the Jenner Institute.

At present, there are more than 100 experimental vaccines against COVID-19 being developed across the globe. Scientists have predicted that it will take at least 12 to 18 months to develop a vaccine, and longer still for it to be made available to the general public.

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