ShivaniLAST UPDATED: Nov. 19, 2020, 5:47 p.m.
New Delhi: AstraZeneca and Oxford University's covid-19 vaccine candidate has shown positive results in older adults, raising hopes around the world for the vulnerable group.
According to a study published in the Lancet medical journal, people aged over 70, who are at higher risk of covid-19, can build robust immune response when injected with the vaccine candidate.
As per the study, 560 volunteers around the world participated in the trials and tolerated the vaccine safely with a lower reactogenicity in older adults than in the younger adults.
"We were pleased to see that our vaccine was not only well-tolerated in older adults, but also stimulated similar immune responses to those seen in younger volunteers," Dr Maheshi Ramasamy, an investigator at the Oxford Vaccine Group, was quoted as saying to the BBC.
"The next step will be to see if this translates into protection from the disease itself," Ramasamy added.
According to the researchers, two week after being injected with the second dose, more than 99 per cent of volunteers had neutralising antibody responses which included people of all ages.
"The robust antibody and T-cell responses were seen in older people in our study are encouraging. The populations at greatest risk of serious Covid-19 disease include people with existing health conditions and older adults," Ramasamy said.
"We hope that this means our vaccine will help to protect some of the most vulnerable people in society, but further research will be needed before we can be sure," she added.
As of now, four vaccine candidates -- Oxford and AstraZeneca, Moderna, Sputnik V, Pfizer-BioNtech -- have shown promising results in the late stage trials.
The UK has already ordered 100 million doses of the vaccine developed by Oxford and AstraZeneca. The vaccine candidate is also being developed by Serum Institute of India.
Earlier, the CEO of AstraZeneca had said that they are looking for a June 2021 timeline to launch their vaccine.