Coronavirus: Oxford restarts trial of AstraZeneca vaccine after pause following ‘spinal cord problem’ in one participant

Coronavirus: Oxford restarts trial of AstraZeneca vaccine after pause following ‘spinal cord problem’ in one participant

  • Final-stage trials in the UK to resume after it was halted over concerns about a participant who fell ill
  • Earlier, AstraZeneca CEO said that the vaccine could still be available by the end of the year

The University of Oxford and AstraZeneca have restarted a UK trial of an experimental Covid-19 vaccine after it was halted over concerns about a participant who fell ill.The UK Medicines Health Regulatory Authority recommended that the trials resume after an independent review of the safety data triggered a pause on September 6, Oxford said in a statement. It declined to disclose details about the volunteer’s illness.

While temporary halts are common in vaccine trials, the interruption to the closely watched Astra-Oxford study had raised concerns about the viability of one of the fastest-moving experimental shots seeking protection from the pandemic.

The race to develop a Covid-19 vaccine has compressed what is normally a decade-long process into a matter of months, with data from final-stage trials expected as soon as next month.