Novavax Covid vaccine is highly effective in U.K. trial, drugmaker says


Every human life is precious and sacred. One who saves a life it is as if he or she has saved the whole of humanity. (Al Quran 5:32/33)

Source: NBC News

By Erika Edwards

Trials in the U.S. continue and are expected to be finished in the spring.

The Maryland-based biotech company Novavax reported Thursday that its experimental Covid-19 vaccine is more than 96 percent effective in preventing mild and severe illness.

The results are from the company’s Phase 3 clinical trial, which was conducted in the U.K. Novavax’s trials in the U.S. and South Africa continue, and the company cannot apply for emergency use authorization in the U.S. until the American trials are complete.

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“We are very encouraged by the data,” Stanley Erck, Novavax’s president and CEO, said in a statement.

The U.K. trial included more than 15,000 adults. More than a quarter were 65 or older, an age group that is generally considered to be at higher risk for complications of Covid-19.

The two-dose vaccine was found to be more than 96 percent effective against earlier strains of the virus circulating in the U.K., putting it on par with vaccines already in use from Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech.

Effectiveness was slightly lower — around 86 percent — against the more contagious B.1.1.7 variant, which was first identified in the U.K. The variant has already been detected in nearly half of U.S. states, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has predicted that it will be the predominant variant by the end of the month.

The Novavax vaccine was also 100 percent effective against the most severe forms Covid-19, regardless of the variant — much like the other vaccines in use in the U.S.

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Categories: Vaccine

4 replies

  1. President Joe Biden will announce that he is directing states to make all U.S. adults eligible for coronavirus vaccinations by May 1 in a prime-time address on Thursday, further accelerating the government’s effort to end the pandemic.

    Biden will say in the speech that if the nation can reach its vaccination goals, it will be possible for Americans to gather in small groups to celebrate July 4, according to senior administration officials who briefed reporters ahead of the president’s remarks.

    They asked not to be identified on condition of participation in the briefing.

    Biden has previously said the administration expects to have enough vaccine by the end of May to vaccinate all U.S. adults, though officials have warned that actually administering shots will take more time.

  2. Novavax Inc.’s Covid-19 vaccine was 96.4% effective against mild, moderate and severe symptoms of the disease in the final analysis of a late-stage trial in the U.K.

    Shares of the drugmaker were up 16% in after-hours trading Thursday in New York. Since the start of this year, the stock had gained more than 68% through Thursday’s close.

    The company also released final results of a mid-stage trial from South Africa showing that its vaccine was 55.4% effective against a variant circulating there that’s already been shown to partially elude the effects of some shots. Both studies reached their statistical goals, the company said in a statement Thursday.

    The company had earlier said that its vaccine was 89.3% effective in the U.K., based on an interim analysis of the study of more than 15,000 people. An interim analysis of the South Africa data had shown it was 49.4% effective overall.

  3. AstraZeneca Plc will deliver less than half the planned number of Covid-19 vaccines to the European Union in the second quarter after the company’s efforts to remedy a slew of problems ran into further trouble.

    The pharmaceutical giant will deliver about 76 million out of a planned 180 million doses to the bloc in the three-month period through June, according to data based on delivery projections for one member state seen by Bloomberg. The national figures were extrapolated to the EU level based on the European Commission’s methodology for distributing supplies.

    Astra warned of a shortfall last month after encountering issues with its vaccine yield at EU production sites, but had said it was looking to make up the loss by shipping some doses from elsewhere, including production sites in the U.S. Those efforts haven’t panned out because nations have grown increasingly protectionist, according to a person with knowledge of the situation, who didn’t want to be identified because the supply details are private. A spokesman for Astra declined to comment and a spokesman for the commission didn’t respond to a request.

    “We have found 75 million doses for the second quarter that were supposed to come from the U.K., the U.S. and to some extent India,” Sweden’s vaccine coordinator, Richard Bergstrom, said in an interview with TV4. “Now we have just been told that the company won’t be able to get those doses as there are export bans from the U.S. and India, and contractual obstacles to sending doses from the U.K.”

  4. Novavax reported on March 11 that its COVID-19 vaccine is 96% efficacious in reducing mild, moderate or severe disease. The Maryland-based company joins the handful of manufacturers that have reported encouraging data on a COVID-19 vaccine; three, Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen Pharmaceuticals, have already received emergency use authorization for their shots from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

    Novavax revealed the final results of its Phase 3 human trials of NVX-CoV2373 in a press release; the findings have not been submitted for peer-review in a scientific journal yet. The company reported that overall, its vaccine was 96% efficacious in protecting people from mild, moderate or severe COVID-19 disease if they were infected with the original SARS-CoV-2 virus. The vaccine was slightly less efficacious, at 86%, in protecting against disease if people were infected with the B.1.1.7 strain of the virus, which is becoming dominant in the U.K., where the study was conducted. That gives the vaccine an overall efficacy of 89.7% against both the original and U.K. variants. By comparison, Pfizer-BioNTech’s vaccine is 95% efficacious against COVID-19 disease, Moderna’s is 94%, and Johnson & Johnson’s is 66%.

    In an ongoing, Phase 2B study of the vaccine in South Africa, where a more worrisome variant is increasingly responsible for a growing share of new infections, Novavax’s shot is so far 55% efficacious in protecting against COVID-19 symptoms.

    “I did not think it was possible to have a vaccine prevent 96% of any respiratory disease,” says Dr. Gregory Glenn, president of research and development at Novavax. “That’s outstanding, and I’m personally ecstatic. If you had asked me a year ago [to predict] the very best vaccine we could expect, I would have said 80% or 85% efficacy against any respiratory disease would be pretty amazing.”

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