The University of Oxford hopes to present late-stage trial results on its Covid-19 vaccine candidate this year, raising hopes that Britain could start to roll out a successful vaccine in late December or early 2021. A vaccine that works is seen as a game-changer in the battle against the coronavirus, which has killed more than 1.2 million people worldwide, shuttered swathes of the global economy and turned normal life upside down for billions of people. I’m optimistic that we could reach that point before the end of this year,” Oxford Vaccine Trial Chief Investigator Andrew Pollard told British lawmakers of presenting trial results this year. Pollard said working out whether or not the vaccine worked would likely come this year, after which the data would have to be carefully reviewed by regulators and then a political decision made on who should get the vaccine. “Our bit – we are getting closer to but we are not there yet,” Pollard, director of the Oxford Vaccine Group, said. Asked if he expected the vaccine would start to be deployed before Christmas, he said: “There is a small chance of that”. The Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine is expected to be one of the first from big pharma to be submitted for regulatory approval, along with Pfizer and BioNTech’s candidate.
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