Coronavirus: Early trial data show Oxford vaccine evoked good response when given in 2-dose regime

Oxford University said on Thursday that its Covid-19 vaccine candidate has a better immune response when given in a two full-dose regime rather than a full-dose followed by a half-dose booster, Reuters reported.

“The booster doses of the vaccine are both shown to induce stronger antibody responses than a single dose, the standard dose/standard dose inducing the best response,” the university said in a statement, citing data of early stage trials. The vaccine “stimulates broad antibody and T cell [components of adave immune system] functions,” it said.

The university said it had explored two different dosing regimes in trials – a full-dose/full-dose regime and a full-dose/half-dose regime – as a possible “dose sparing” strategy.

The developers of the vaccine candidate have already published later stage trial results that show higher efficacy when a half dose is followed by a full dose compared to the other dosage regime. However, the trails need more work to guarantee that result.

The latest details from the Phase I and 2 clinical trials released on Thursday had no reference to the half-dose/full-dose regime. Oxford has said the dose regime was “unplanned” but has been approved by regulators.

Earlier in the month, data from later phase 3 trials revealed that the Oxford vaccine candidate, developed in collaboration with United Kingdom-based drugmaker AstraZeneca, showed 90% efficacy in a small group who got a half-dose first, but only 62% among them were given two full doses. The overall vaccine efficacy across both groups was 70.4%.

Experts, however, had expressed caution, saying that while the vaccine was safe and effective, AstraZeneca and Oxford University would have to do more work to achieve 90% efficacy as some other vaccine candidates have shown. In contrast, the Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna vaccines both have efficacies above 90%.

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Meanwhile, the coronavirus has infected more than 7.48 crore people and killed over 16.60 lakh globally, according to the Johns Hopkins University. Over 4.22 crore people have recovered from the infection.

Coronavirus: Early trial data show Oxford vaccine evoked good response when given in 2-dose regime