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Monday, January 25, 2021

Oxford vaccine, likely to become available by Oct’20, offers ‘double defence’ against Covid-19

Illustrative vial of coronavirus vaccine. (Photo courtesy: pmlive)

(TibetanReview.net, Jul17’20) – As the world awaits a cure that could end the Covid-19 pandemic that has wreaked havoc on people’s life and economies across the world, while China, which unleashed it, makes the most of it to exert its global dominance, there is good news from researchers at the University of Oxford about the vaccine they hope to get ready for use before October this year. According to media reports in the UK, the research team had discovered that the jab could provide “double protection” against the deadly coronavirus following early stage human trials.

Blood samples taken from a group of UK volunteers given a dose of the vaccine were reported to show that it stimulated the body to produce both antibodies and “killer T-cells”.

This is extremely significant because separate studies have suggested that antibodies that fight the virus may fade away within months while T-cells can stay in circulation for years.

Still, the telegraph.co.uk Jul 15 cited its source as cautioning that the results, while “extremely promising”, did not yet prove that the Oxford vaccine provides long-lasting immunity against the deadly virus.

“I can tell you that we now know the Oxford vaccine covers both bases – it produces both a T cell and an antibody response. It’s the combination of these two that will hopefully keep people safe. So far, so good. It’s an important moment. But we still have a long way to go,” the report quoted a senior source from the trial as saying.

Another source close to the team has described the presence of both antibodies and T-cells as a “double defence” against Covid-19.

As to when the vaccine would be available, David Carpenter, chairman of the Berkshire Research Ethics Committee, which approved the Oxford trial, has said the vaccine team was “absolutely on track”.

“Nobody can put final dates… things might go wrong but the reality is that by working with a big pharma company, that vaccine could be fairly widely available around September and that is the sort of target they are working on,” he was quoted as saying.

India is a significant partner in the production of the vaccine once it passes the final trial.

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