As of this morning – Wednesday April 8 – the current recorded case count for COVID-19 (coronavirus) in the UK has hit 55,242 with 6,159 deaths
UK gene and cell therapy group Oxford Biomedica has joined a Consortium led by the Jenner Institute, Oxford University, to rapidly develop, scale-up and manufacture a potential vaccine candidate for COVID-19, called ChAdOx1 nCov-19.
According to the firm, the vaccine is one of the leading candidates currently in development globally, and is expected to be the UK’s first COVID-19 vaccine in clinical trials later this month.
The Consortium is led by the Jenner Institute, University of Oxford and also includes the Vaccines Manufacturing and Innovation Centre (VMIC), Pall Life Sciences, Cobra Biologics and Halix BV.
The Jenner Institute and the Oxford Vaccine Group have recruited individuals aged 18-55 from the Thames Valley area in the UK to study the vaccine’s safety and efficacy.
Oxford Biomedica will provide access to its large scale GMP manufacturing facilities for viral vectors, including its new Oxbox facility, to the Consortium as required, which, along with other manufacturing partners in the UK and internationally, would allow for up-scaled manufacturing capacity if necessary.
The Oxford vaccine candidate has been shown to generate a strong immune response from one dose and it has demonstrated a good safety profile in pre-clinical and clinical trials conducted to date.
“While our current activities on this vaccine candidate are just initiating, should the Consortium confirm there is promise for this candidate in the clinical trial initiating this month, we will play our role within the Consortium to scale up manufacturing as fast as possible. This will help to provide significant access to the vaccine candidate for further clinical trials and potentially, if approved for use, for many people in the UK and beyond,” noted John Dawson, Oxford Biomedica's chief executive.
WASH YOUR HANDS:
Regularly and thoroughly clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water.
MAINTAIN SOCIAL DISTANCING:
Maintain at least two metres (six feet) distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing.
STAY AT HOME:
Only go outside for food, health reasons or work (but only if you cannot work from home)