Novavax UK trials show 'high levels of efficacy' says expert
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Trials of the Novavax coronavirus drug has shown the vaccine has “high levels” of efficacy and safety according to the chief investigator, Professor Paul Heath. Britain has already secured a deal for 60 million doses of the lifesaving jab. Professor Heath noted that the trial had also shown the drug worked well against the Kent virus variant and stresses that there “no safety concerns” following the clinical tests.
Professor Heath told Sky News: “The trial has produced the primary results and this shows very high efficacy against symptomatic COVID-19 around 90 percent effective and that includes against the UK variant.
“Around 86 per cent effective against the UK variant, around 95 percent effective against the previous so-called Wuhan strain variant.
“So really excellent data.”
“Also showing very high levels of safety, no safety concerns.”
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He continued: “All of this now is with the MHRA and of course they are diligently looking at all of the data and will in good time hopefully approve this vaccine to be implemented.
“We on behalf of all of the investigators who have done so much work in getting this trail to where it is and the more than 15,000 participants who took part in it.
“We are all very keen of course for it to be approved and then implemented rapidly in the UK.”
Novavax is already working on a new vaccine that will target the new variant and expects to start testing it in a few months.
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The Prime Minister confirmed an agreement with British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) would see doses of the coronavirus vaccine manufactured in the northeast of England.
At a televised coronavirus briefing on Monday evening, Boris Johnson said: “At the same time as we push forwards with our programme to offer a vaccination to all adults by the end of July we’re building up our own long-term UK manufacturing capabilities.
“I’ve already told you that Novavax – a potentially significant new weapon in our armoury against Covid – is going to be made at Fujifilm in the North East.
“And I can today announce that the Vaccine Task Force has reached an agreement with GlaxoSmithKline to finish and bottle this precious fluid also in the North East giving us between 50 and 60 million doses of UK made vaccine subject to the right approvals from the MHRA.”
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The UK has already vaccinated more than 30 million Brits, with all over-50s and clinically vulnerable adults set to have been given the first dose by April 15.
The Government has set itself the target of the end of July for giving a dose of a Covid antidote to all adults.
April is likely to largely see second doses administered due to a drop off in the supply of vaccines.
The production of the Novavax jabs in May – if approved for use by the regulator – would help speed up the rollout of the immunisation programme.
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