The new vaccine is called ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 and is currently being assessed in animal trials at the Public Health England (PHE) laboratory at Porton Down, near Salisbury. The trial is being run by the Jenner Institute and Oxford Vaccine Group.
“Vaccines are being designed from scratch and progressed at an unprecedented rate. The upcoming trial will be critical for assessing the feasibility of vaccination against Covid-19 and could lead to early deployment,” Prof Adrian Hill, the director of the Jenner Institute at the University of Oxford, told The Guardian.
The researchers are seeking subjects without COVID-19. In addition, it is likely that anyone on medication, and women who are pregnant or breastfeeding will be excluded.
During the trial, some subjects will be injected with the vaccine, while others will receive a control injection for comparison. However, the final results will not be known for months, as larger trials will be needed.
For the time being, Oxford has requested that the media not disturb the vaccine team. “Our researchers are working with great care, and due haste, to get this vaccine ready to be used in the clinical trial. We ask that the media do not continue to contact researchers while this critical work is underway, and to use the media contact form for press enquiries,” wrote a University in a statement.