British-Swedish Pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca has reportedly teamed up with the University of Oxford to manufacture and distribute a COVID-19 vaccine that is being developed by the London based university if in case the treatment proves effective. The first trial of the vaccine begun last week at Oxford. As of now, the COVID-19 pandemic has infected 165,221 and killed 26,097 people across the British mainland.
According to reports, the scientists testing the vaccine have claimed that data from testing could be available from University’s Jenner Institute as early as mid-June. However, they added that the successful development of the vaccine would take a minimum of a year.
Meanwhile, AstraZeneca‘s chief executive Pascal Aoriot while speaking to International media reporters said that the need for a vaccine to defeat the COVID-19 pandemic was urgent. He added that he hoped that by the collaboration they could accelerate the spread of the vaccine and protect people from the “deadliest pandemic of the generation”
The university on April 29 reportedly released new footage of blood tests being carried out on volunteers at their clinical laboratories. According to reports, researchers at the university gave injections to volunteers in a study that eventually aims to include hundreds in hopes of telling not only if the vaccine is safe but if it works. Researchers created the new vaccine by inserting genes for a spikey protein that studs the outer surface of the new coronavirus into another, harmless virus.
The idea: the immune system will spot the foreign protein and make antibodies to fight it, primed to react quickly if the person eventually is exposed to COVID-19. The Oxford University programme is the first in the UK to develop a possible vaccine for coronavirus. Dozens of vaccine candidates are in various stages of development around the world. Experts have cautioned that even if early studies go well, it will be at least a year before any are available for widespread use.