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Wednesday, December 8th, 2021

Oxford University’s COVID-19 vaccine proceeds to clinical safety testing

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An Oxford University vaccine for COVID-19 funded by the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) last month has officially advanced into Phase 1 testing, complete with human trials.

Known as ChAdOx1 nCoV-19, the candidate is the third CEPI-funded vaccine to enter Phase 1 trials. It was created from reworking of the university’s ChAdOx1 viral vector technology to address the novel coronavirus threat and builds on a relationship between CEPI and Oxford that has been ongoing since 2018.

“We are pleased to see the rapid advancement of Oxford University’s vaccine candidate into clinical safety testing,” Dr. Richard Hatchett, CEO of CEPI, said. “Producing a safe, effective, and globally accessible vaccine is our best hope in ending this pandemic. We aim to do this at a speed never before seen in vaccine development. To achieve this goal, unprecedented levels of collaboration and investment across private and public sectors will be needed. Oxford team have taken a significant step forward in that journey, but we still have a long road to travel.”

The vaccine platform in question has previously produced vaccine candidates for use against pathogens like influenza, Chikungunya, and Zika. A version made for MERs is currently undergoing a second clinical study in Saudi Arabia.

To date, CEPI has initiated eight COVID-19 vaccine development projects, including the efforts out of Oxford. CEPI hopes to eventually have at least three vaccine candidates to submit to regulatory authorities to be licensed for general use.