The drug has been approved by the UK Medicines and Healthcare Administration (MHRA), The Guardian reports. The decision came after “rigorous clinical trials and data analysis conducted by MHRA experts who concluded that the vaccine meets stringent safety, quality and efficacy standards,” the UK Department of Health and Human Services (DHSC) said Wednesday.
The UK has ordered 100 million doses from AstraZeneca and the first 4 million doses will be available in the coming days. Since the drug will be produced at the country’s facilities, this will allow for rapid scaling up of vaccination. As noted in the DHSC posting, Oxford vaccine can be stored at 2-8 ° C, so it is easy to transport and deploy to GPs as well as nursing homes.
The first to receive the vaccine will be risk groups – nursing homes, doctors and patients with severe chronic diseases. Next will be seniors over 80 and health officials.
The drug AZD1222, which was developed by scientists at Oxford University in conjunction with the British-Swedish pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca, has the same mechanism of action as the Russian vector vaccine – the chimpanzee adenovirus (ChAdOx1), which is safe for humans, is genetically modified to encode the spike protein of the coronavirus. When it enters the human body with the help of a vaccine, it forces cells to produce protein and “trains” the immune system to recognize the virus.
In November, the developers announced the results of the final clinical trials of the vaccine in the UK and Brazil. With the introduction of half the dose of the drug and the full dose with an interval of a month, the level of protection against infection was estimated at 90%. The second regimen, in which participants received two full doses one month apart, was 62% effective. The combined analysis of both modes showed an average efficiency of 70%.