J&J starts human study of Covid-19 vaccine after promising monkey data | World News

Johnson & Johnson on Thursday killed US human safety tests for its Covid-19 vaccine after releasing details of a study in monkeys that showed its best-performing vaccine candidate offered strong protection in a single dose Of.

Upon exposure to the virus, six of the six animals who received the vaccine candidate were completely protected from lung disease and five of the six were protected from infection, which, according to the study published in the journal, Measured by presence of virus in nasal swab. Nature.

The Chief Scientific Officer of J&J, Drs. “It gives us confidence that we can test a single-shot vaccine in this epidemic and learn that it has a protective effect in humans”, Paul Stoffels said in a telephone interview.

The drugmaker said it has begun early-stage human trials in the United States and Belgium and will test its vaccine candidate in more than 1,000 healthy adults between the ages of 18 and 55, as well as adults 65 and older. .

The US government has supported Jammu and Kashmir vaccine efforts with a $ 456 million funding aimed at speeding up the production of a vaccine to end the epidemic, which has infected millions and over 660,000 people. have been killed.

Stoffels said prior tests of this type of vaccine in other diseases have found that a second pill greatly increases safety. But a single-shot vaccine has an important advantage in an epidemic, bypassing a lot of logistical issues that involve people coming back for their second dose.

The company plans to take one or two doses in its Phase 1 trial.

Based on those results, J&J planned to begin large-scale, Phase 3 trials in the second half of September with a single-shot regimen. Around the same time, the company will begin a parallel Phase 3 study of a two-shot trial of the vaccine, Stoffels said.

“The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is exciting because it’s a dose,” said Deborah Birks, Coordinator of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, in an interview to Fox News.

He said that following a single dose “show safety in monkeys, as other vaccines have shown with two doses, reducing the time period of development because your readout becomes 30 days,” he said.

The J & J vaccine uses a common cold virus known as adenovirus type 26, or Ad26, which alters the cells of the coronovirus protein in the body, increasing the body’s immune defense against the virus.

In the monkey study, scientists at J&J and Harvard’s Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center studied seven different potential vaccines in 32 animals and compared the results to 20 control animals who received a placebo shot.

Six weeks later, all animals were exposed to the SARS-CoV-2 virus. All 20 animals that received placebo developed high levels of the virus in their lungs and nasal swabs.

Among the best-performing candidate, whom J and J selected for human testing, none of the animals had the virus in their lungs and only one showed low levels of the virus in the nasal swab. Lab tests showed that all of them had developed antibodies capable of neutralizing the virus after a single shot.

“This study suggests that just one vaccination with the Ad26 vaccine also neutralizes the monkeys’ antibody responses and strong protection against Covid-19,” said Dr. Dan Barch, a vaccine researcher at Beth Israel Deacon, Researched together with it. Jammu and Jammu

Shares of Jammu and Kashmir were up nearly 2% at $ 149.93 before the market opened on Thursday.

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