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Oxford, Astrazeneca & Serum Institute of India’s vaccine ‘Covishield’ found to be 70% efficient

This vaccine's efficacy that could be 90% at the end of trials and safety confirm that it will be highly effective against COVID-19. The Serum Institute of India will be producing 1 billion of its doses.

A Covid-19 vaccine developed by the University of Oxford and AstraZeneca Plc prevented a majority of people from getting the disease in a large trial, another promising development in the quest to end the pandemic.

The vaccine stopped an average of 70% of participants from falling ill, an early analysis of the data show. That’s below the high bar set by Pfizer Inc. and Moderna Inc., but effectiveness rose to 90% for one of two dosing regimes, using half a dose followed by a full one later. The other method showed 62% effectiveness.

“One dosing regimen (n=2,741) showed vaccine efficacy of 90% when AZD1222 was given as a half dose, followed by a full dose at least one month apart, and another dosing regimen (n=8,895) showed 62% efficacy when given as two full doses at least one month apart. The combined analysis from both dosing regimens (n=11,636) resulted in an average efficacy of 70%. All results were statistically significant (p<=0.0001). More data will continue to accumulate and additional analysis will be conducted, refining the efficacy reading and establishing the duration of protection,” it added.

The Serum Institute of India, the world’s largest manufacturer of vaccines by volume, has partnered with AstraZeneca, the Gates Foundation and the Gavi vaccine alliance to produce more than a billion doses of a COVID-19 vaccine for global supply.

AstraZeneca will have 200 million doses by the end of 2020, with 700 million doses ready globally by the end of the first quarter of 2021, operations executive Pam Cheng said on Monday.