Initial data from the Phase 3 trial showed that participants who received the Valneva vaccine had more neutralizing antibodies than those who received the AstraZeneca injection.
Adam Finn, professor of pediatrics at the University of Bristol and chief investigator of the trial, said the immune responses were “both impressive and extremely encouraging”.
“This is a much more traditional approach to vaccine manufacturing than the vaccines deployed so far in the UK, Europe and North America and these results suggest that this vaccine candidate is well on its way to being played out. an important role in the fight against the pandemic ”, he declared.
Valneva shares rose 32% on Monday. They had fallen 42% in one day last month after the British government announced it was ending its deal to buy at least 100 million doses of the vaccine. The government accused the vaccine maker of violating the deal, which Valneva has vigorously denied.
The British government had invested in the Scottish manufacturing plant at Valneva, in part to boost domestic vaccine production. When he announced the investment in August 2020, Kwasi Kwarteng, then Minister of Affairs, called the plant a “vaccine production powerhouse”.
But Downing Street said last month that, as the UK regulator has yet to approve the vaccine, it will play no part in the rollout this fall and winter.
Valneva has started a continuous submission to the UK Medicines and Health Products Regulatory Agency and is preparing to start the conditional approval application process in the EU.
There were no serious cases of Covid in any of the trial groups, which included more than 4,600 participants. Valneva’s vaccine also elicited a response from T cells, another important part of the immune system, in the group that was tested for them.
Far fewer participants receiving the Valneva vaccine experienced side effects, and no serious adverse events were reported. Many countries have limited the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine to older populations, or have abandoned it altogether, due to a rare side effect on blood clotting.
Thomas Lingelbach, chief executive of Valneva, said the company wanted to offer an alternative vaccine to those who have not yet received a vaccine. The vaccine is also being evaluated in a booster trial.
” We . . . let us continue to believe that we can make an important contribution to the global fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, ”he said.