AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford have published in The Lancet preliminary results of the Phase I/II trial of their Covid-19 vaccine candidate. In line with last week’s information, it generated an immune response via neutralizing antibodies and T-cells (cellular immunity). The trials involved just over 1,000 healthy adults aged 18-55. A control group received a meningitis vaccine as a placebo and 10 participants received a second dose one month after the first. In the future, the two-dose regimen will be prioritised. No relevant side effects were identified. Phase II/III trials are already underway in the UK, Brazil and South Africa and will soon be conducted in the US. As was the case last week when we heard from Moderna and Johnson & Johnson, these are positive developments, bringing us closer to being able to achieve a vaccine against Covid-19.
The same was true for the UK’s Synairgen after its respiratory drug proved successful in a clinical trial. This led to an impressive rise of 439% in its stock price.
The news related to the pharmaceutical sector and the coronavirus does not stop here. France’s Valneva received an order for 60,000 vaccines from the UK government, which boosted its share price by 21.85%. Great Britain also became the first country to ensure a supply of a potential vaccine developed by Germany’s BioNTech along with the US group Pfizer. The race for the vaccine is starting to accelerate and investors are looking favourably on the pharmaceutical sector.