The ‘sweet tasting’ Covid vaccine sprayed into the nose which could be more effective than jabs – .

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The ‘sweet tasting’ Covid vaccine sprayed into the nose which could be more effective than jabs – .


ITV News Health editor-in-chief Emily Morgan asks trial volunteer what it’s like to have a Covid vaccine sprayed into your nose


Around the same time last year, we were all preparing to enter a second coronavirus lockdown. Covid cases had increased, winter was coming and the vaccine was still a few weeks away from being approved. Things weren’t going well, especially for the north of England and the Midlands.

Now, not only have we fully immunized a large majority of the population, but almost nine million people have received a booster or a third vaccine.

And that’s not all. The University of Oxford has given us exclusive access to the Phase 1 trial of their Oxford / AstraZeneca vaccine for use in a nasal spray.

After getting the vaccine through my nose, trial volunteer Lyle Hopkins told me it was “much better than he expected”.

“I thought it was going to tingle or something, but I could barely feel it. It was pretty sweet, it tasted kind of sweet, ”he added.

The Covid vaccine nasal spray could take a year or more to be made available to the public.

Scientists have already administered the nasal spray to 30 unvaccinated people and will now administer it to 12 others, who received their first two doses, as a booster. The purpose of this phase of the trial is to establish safety – to basically make sure that it doesn’t have any adverse effects.

The goal of the entire trial is to establish whether administering the Covid vaccine in this way generates an immune response and stops the infection.

Many immunologists believe that using this technique could in fact provide much greater protection, especially against transmission and mild illness. If so, it could be very exciting.

“If you get a vaccine in your nose, it can be particularly effective in creating a targeted immune response in the nose and particularly effective in blocking infections there,” said Dr. Sandy Douglas, who is leading the study.

It would not be the first vaccine in nasal form. Young children get the flu shot this way, and hay fever sprays have been around for years. Having a better immune response to a spray might not be the only benefit.


Dr Sandy Douglas explains what his team hopes to achieve with the study


We know that young children will be much more prone to receiving the jab if not through a needle. The same could be said for many 12-15 year olds who would probably prefer a spray. Then there are the adults – the needle intolerant and those who may find intramuscular injections uncomfortable.

“The existing vaccines are great – I really don’t want people to see this today and think, ‘I’ll wait for the spray vaccine’ because it probably won’t be available for a year or more, even though things are going perfectly What we are trying to do here is target areas where there can be room for improvement, ”said Dr Douglas.

That said, if a nasal spray can increase vaccination and be more effective at reducing transmission, then it’s a win-win situation. Who knows, maybe this time next year I’ll write about the first Covid vaccine nasal sprays given in this country.


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