Oxford vaccine reaches one billion doses released
29 July 2021
The University of Oxford’s and our partners AstraZeneca have today announced that one billion doses of the ChAdOx1 nCov-19 coronavirus vaccine have been released, to more than 170 countries, marking a key milestone as part of the University and AstraZeneca’s joint vision to make the available to the world, on a not-for-profit basis for the world during the pandemic, and in perpetuity for low- and middle-income countries.
AstraZeneca, with their extensive world-wide development and manufacturing capabilities, have been able to have the vaccine approved and licenced for use in over 170 countries, with over 20 manufacturing sites across the world, including the Serum Institute of India, working together to release the one billion doses worldwide.
As the manufacturing of adeno-virus vector vaccines is complex and requires significant investment in infrastructure and expertise to ensure the safety and quality of the vaccine, we are working together with AstraZeneca to ensure that significant technology transfer happens between the global manufacturing sites and their supply chains.
Louise Richardson, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford, said:
‘On behalf of my colleagues across Oxford I would like to offer my warmest congratulations to AstraZeneca for the extraordinary accomplishment of releasing one billion doses of our life saving vaccine. By distributing this vaccine at cost, they have made an admirable and exemplary contribution to global health. We are delighted to be in partnership with them.’
Dame Sarah Gilbert, Saïd Professor of Vaccinology, and co-developer of the vaccine, said:
‘We started to create this vaccine in January 2020 without knowing if it would ever be needed. To have reached one billion doses released only 18 months later is a phenomenal achievement on the part of AstraZeneca, who have co-ordinated manufacturing at multiple sites around the world to reach this milestone.
‘It was made possible by many years of research at Oxford University in the production of the vaccine platform technology, developing a manufacturing process and conducting clinical trials with other ChAdOx1-vectored vaccines.’
Sir Andy Pollard, Professor of Paediatric Infection and Immunity, and Director of the Oxford Vaccine Group, said:
‘There is huge satisfaction and pride for the vaccine researchers, and the members of the public who took part in the trials, to have brought a billion doses of a life-saving vaccine to the world.
‘We also pay tribute to the superhuman efforts of the teams at AstraZeneca and Serum Institute of India who are producing a phenomenal number of doses 24 hours a day and getting them to vaccine clinics in more than 170 countries. There is still so much to do, and all in the supply chain are pushing on knowing the next billion people are still waiting for their doses.’
Adrian Hill, Director of the Jenner Institute, said:
‘This extraordinary manufacturing achievement, supplying over 170 countries with a billion doses of vaccine within seven months of licensure, reflects important improvements in manufacturing process yield made in Oxford, AstraZeneca and the Serum Institute of India last year, and our engagement from March 2020 onwards with some of the world’s largest vaccine manufacturers.’
Notes to editors:
For further information, or to request an interview, please contact the University of Oxford press office at email@example.com or on +44 (0)1865 280528
For more about the Oxford vaccine project and team: www.ox.ac.uk/covid-vaccine
For detailed information about the vaccine trial: covid19vaccinetrial.co.uk
About the Oxford COVID-19 vaccine
ChAdOx1 nCoV-19, now known as AZD1222 co-invented by the University of Oxford and its spin-out company, Vaccitech, is being trialled by the University’s Jenner Institute and Oxford Vaccine Group. The team started working to develop a vaccine against coronavirus in January 2020.
Developed at the Jenner Institute, the recombinant adenovirus vector ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 uses a viral vector based on a weakened version of the common cold virus (adenovirus) containing the genetic material of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein. After vaccination, the surface spike protein is produced, which primes the immune system to attack COVID-19 if it later infects the body.
Over 50,000 people to date have taken part in clinical trials of The ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine sponsored by the University of Oxford and AstraZeneca, and many more have received the vaccine through public vaccination programmes following emergency use licensure. It has been shown to be safe and well tolerated, although it can cause temporary side effects, such as a temperature, flu-like symptoms, headache or sore arm.
The potential vaccine entered Phase III clinical trials in May to study safety and efficacy in healthy volunteers. In total, nearly 24,000 volunteers have joined the University of Oxford sponsored trial, in sites around the UK (approximately 12,000 volunteers), Brazil (approximately 10,000 volunteers) and South Africa (approximately 2,000 volunteers). Interim efficacy and safety data were published in The Lancet in December, including an extensive safety database of over 74,000 ‘person months’ of safety data follow-up.
Our partners, AstraZeneca, have committed to delivering billions of doses of its COVID-19 vaccine across the globe in a broad, equitable, and timely way at no profit during the pandemic. This includes an agreement with the European Commission to supply up to 400 million doses, starting in early 2021 following the regulatory approval from the European Medicines Agency, with tens of millions of doses due to be supplied in February and March.
For more information on this commitment, visit: https://www.astrazeneca.com/content/astraz/media-centre/articles/2021/astrazenecas-covid-19-vaccine-european-union-supply-commitment.html
Not for profit information:
As part of our agreement with our partner AstraZeneca, the vaccine will be supplied on a not-for-profit basis for the duration of the pandemic and in perpetuity for low- and middle-income countries, with any future royalties received by the University of Oxford being re-invested in the medical sciences.
This trial is funded by the National Institute for Health Research, UK Research and Innovation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Lemann Foundation, and the South African Medical Research Council. We are grateful to the NIHR infrastructure provided through the NIHR Biomedical Research Centres and the NIHR Clinical Research Network at the UK study sites.
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