AstraZeneca Resumes COVID Vaccine Trial, J&J May Restart Soon | United Kingdom News


Trials were halted in the United States after participants fell ill.

AstraZeneca Plc, the UK drugmaker developing a coronavirus vaccine with the University of Oxford, has been cleared by US regulators to resume a trial interrupted in the country for more than a month over concerns over a volunteer fell ill, according to a person close to the decision.The person has asked not to be identified because the information is not public.

A decision to allow the study to resume would remove a significant hurdle for AstraZeneca and Oxford as they attempt to get their coronavirus vaccinated across the line. They are among the pioneers in the global vaccine quest, alongside developers such as Pfizer Inc. and Moderna Inc.

AstraZeneca declined to comment. A representative of the United States Food and Drug Administration did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Moncef Slaoui, responsible for Operation Warp Speed, said in an interview earlier this week that the AstraZeneca trial and another study of a Johnson & Johnson vaccine candidate that had also been suspended could resume in the coming days.

Questions have revolved around AstraZeneca’s trials since it was announced in September that a participant in a British study had developed an unexplained illness, and partners have faced pressure to disclose more information about the episode. While temporary shutdowns are common, the shutdown has raised concerns about the prospects for one of the fastest shots and highlighted the hurdles researchers face when developing a vaccine.


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