Explained podcast | Oxford's coronavirus vaccine: All you need to know

Coronavirus Serum Institute of India to apply for trials of Oxford vaccine aims to start by August

The World Health Organization on Monday hailed the "good news" of positive results from two Covid-19 vaccines that have proven safe for humans and have produced a positive immune response against the infection.

Preliminary findings from the Phase 1/2 trials of the University of Oxford's vaccine candidates show encouraging results.

Tune in to the Explained podcast to find out.

In its Phase I trial, the vaccine-induced so-called neutralizing antibodies - the kind that stop the virus from infecting cells - in 91% of individuals a month after they got one dose, and in 100% of subjects who got a second dose. When the adenovirus enters the cells of vaccinated people, it also delivers the genetic code for the spike protein, causing the cells to produce it and help teach the immune system to recognize the coronavirus causing COVID-19.

"There's increasing evidence that having a T-cell response as well as antibodies could be very important in controlling COVID-19", he explained. As part of CSIRO's preclinical study of Oxford's vaccine candidate, our scientists evaluated the efficacy of one versus two doses as well as administration of the vaccine via a nasal delivery and/or an intramuscular injection.

Satyajit Rath, an immunologist from the National Institute of Immunology in New Delhi, found it interesting and promising that the boost with the same vaccine candidate tended to increase antibody levels further despite pre-existing antibodies.

Soriot said the vaccine had performed well in stage 1 and 2 trials suggesting it offered good tolerability without serious side effects.

"This vaccine is meant to induce both, so it can attack the virus when it's circulating in the body, as well as attacking infected cells".

According to the report, the experimental vaccine known as AZD1222 tested over 1,000 people in April. We don't know exactly know what protects us against a coronavirus infection, as there is still so much we don't know, so our research continues.

Sars-CoV-2 is the scientific name for the coronavirus that causes the respiratory illness COVID-19. However, none of the participants had COVID 19, and it would be interesting to see if they will be immune to this virus in the long run.

"Data that T cell responses are occurring too are expected but still comforting to have, although they provide as yet no information about whether they are functionally relevant for providing protection", he said. The trial showed taking paracetamol could allay most of the effects without impacting the efficacy of the vaccine.

A team of scientists at Oxford University's Jenner Institute and Oxford Vaccine Group has taken the next step towards the discovery of a safe, effective and accessible vaccine against coronavirus. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.