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Novavax vaccine shows 89.3% efficacy against COVID-19 in phase 3 trials

Novavax vaccine shows 89.3% efficacy against COVID-19 in phase 3 trials

Vaccine development company Novavax has published data which shows its COVID-19 vaccine was 89.3% effective in preventing Coronavirus in trial participants.

The data comes from phase 3 trials which took place in the UK at the end of last year.

According to Novavax, the vaccine is the first to demonstrate clinical efficacy against COVID-19 and both UK and South African variants of the virus. Preliminary analysis of data from the trials showed that the vaccine candidate was 95.6% effective against the original strain of COVID-19 and 85.6% effective against the new, now-dominant UK variant of the virus.

The UK has secured 60 million doses of the vaccine which could be mostly manufactured in Stockton-on-Tees, County Durham and delivered in the second half of 2021 if approved by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). 

The vaccine candidate, officially NVX-CoV2373, only needs to be stored at fridge temperature, which, if approved, could make easier the logistics of distributing the vaccine. Over 37,000 participants have taken part across four different clinical studies across five countries so far in the trials of the vaccine.

In a tweet, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson welcomed the news;

"Good news that the @Novavax vaccine has proved effective in UK trials. Thank you to all the volunteers who made these results possible.

"Our medicines regulator will now assess the vaccine, which will be made in Teesside. If approved, we have 60m doses on order."

The Government's vaccine minister Nadhim Zahwi, who participated in a Novavax trial, said, 

"Having taken part in Novavax’s vaccine trial myself, I am particularly thrilled to see such positive results. I want to thank the thousands of trial volunteers, without whom these results would not have been possible.

"It will now be for the regulator to do its crucial work in assessing the efficacy and safety of this vaccine, but if approved it will be a further boost to our vaccination programme."

The UK has so far approved three vaccines for use against COVID-19 to date, including the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine and the Moderna vaccine.

The announcement regarding the high efficacy of the Novavax vaccine comes as more than 7.4 million people have received the first dose of a vaccine against COVID-19 in the UK. The UK Government is aiming to give a first dose of the vaccine to the 15 million people considered the highest priority by the JCVI by 15 February 2021.

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