Coronavirus vaccine trial set to begin in the U.K

Coronavirus trials to take place in Southhampton. [AP]
With 17 sites selected across the country and researchers looking to recruit around 6 thousand willing participants, the United Kingdom is set to start testing a coronavirus vaccination trial today.

A vaccine trial, which aims to determine the safety and efficiency of a vaccine consists of four phases. The current vaccine being developed by pharmaceutical company Janssen has already gone through phases one and two as well as a single-dose study which indicated that the COVID-19 contender is generally well tolerated and induces a strong immune response. Phase three of the trial is set to begin its two-dose study.

Cities taking part in the trial will include London, Leicester, Sheffield, Manchester, Dundee and Belfast, Bristol, and Cardiff.

25,000 people have already taken part in vaccine trials in the UK and more than 300,000 have signed the NHS vaccine research registry to showcase their willingness to take part in more trials to bring an end to this pandemic. In a statement, the chairwoman of the UK’s Vaccine Taskforce said. “Because we’ve got this national citizen registry of volunteers willing to go into clinical trials, it has accelerated our ability to enroll trials.” She went on. “And that means that the UK is a very favorable place to come in and run studies and so Novavax has expanded that study, and of course Janssen has come to the UK for the first, I think, of its two-dose study.”

The Janssen trial will be the third to take place in the UK and the vaccine itself is an adenoviral vaccine, like the one Oxford University is working on.

Saul Faust, professor of pediatric immunology and infectious diseases at the University of Southhampton and University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We just don’t know how each of these vaccines is going to behave and which are going to generate the better short and long-term immunity.” He continued to add; “And we can’t be certain that vaccine supply will be efficient and effective and secure from any one manufacturer, wherever it’s being made in the world.”

In case this vaccine is successful, the United Kingdom has already secured 30 million doses.


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