A new covid vaccine, Novavax is 89.3% effective in UK, South Africa trials
London, Jan. 29, 2021 (AltAfrica)-UK phase three trials of the experimental Novavax COVID-19 vaccine have found it demonstrated 89.3% efficacy against the virus.
Preliminary analysis showed the new UK variant was detected in more than half of the coronavirus cases recorded in the trials, with the vaccine candidate shown to be 95.6% effective against the original strain and 85.6% effective against the variant.
The study involved more than 15,000 participants aged 18 to 84, with 27% aged over 65.
An early stage study carried out on 4,400 people in South Africa has shown that the Novavax treatment has “significant clinical efficacy” against the South African variant of the virus.
The BBC’s medical editor Fergus Walsh said the Novavax vaccine is the first to show it is effective against the new more contagious ‘Kent’ variant of the virus discovered in the UK.
It only needs to be kept at fridge temperature, meaning distribution and supply chain management is easier, like the Oxford/AstraZeneca jab.
After an initial dose, a second shot is given three weeks later.
At a cost of $16 (£11.66) per vaccination, the Novavax jab is more expensive than the AstraZeneca one, but cheaper than Pfizer or Moderna.
Prime minister Boris Johnson said the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency will start to assess the vaccination straight away.
Good news that the @Novavax vaccine has proved effective in UK trials. Thank you to all the volunteers who made these results possible.— Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) January 28, 2021
Our medicines regulator will now assess the vaccine, which will be made in Teesside. If approved, we have 60m doses on order.
The UK has already ordered 60 million vials of the vaccine which will be manufactured at the Fujifilm plant in Stockton-on-Tees.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: “This is positive news and, if approved by the medicines regulator, the Novavax vaccine will be a significant boost to our vaccination programme and another weapon in our arsenal to beat this awful virus.
“The NHS stands ready to roll this vaccine out as quickly as possible to those most at risk if it is authorised.”
Vaccines Minister Nadhim Zahawi said: “Having taken part in Novavax’s vaccine trial myself, I am particularly thrilled to see such positive results. I want to thank the thousands of trial volunteers, without whom these results would not have been possible.