Tags: Coronavirus | Coronavirus Special | Health Topics | Vaccines | Cold/Flu | astrazeneca | covid-19

AstraZeneca Exec: Vaccine Not Reserved 'Only to the Rich'

the astrazeneca building against a cloudy sky
(Raphael Lafargue/AP)

By    |   Monday, 23 November 2020 05:24 PM

AstraZeneca, which announced the data behind its COVID-19 vaccine candidate Monday, has made a "huge commitment" to providing the vaccine in no profit so it will benefit all people, not only the wealthy," Ruud Dobber, an executive vice president for the pharmaceutical giant, said Monday.

"We have supply chains in the United States, in the U.K., and developing countries in the world," Dobber told CNBC's "Squawk Box." "That's an important part of our strategy: To make the vaccine available to all the people in the world. This is not reserved only to the rich countries or to the rich people."

AstraZeneca early Monday reported a vaccine it developed with the University of Oxford prevented 70% of people from developing COVID. However, researchers found, if people were given a half dose of the vaccine followed later by a full dose, instead of two full doses, the protection allowed by the drug rose to about 90%.

"The first step we need to make, clearly, is to go now to the regulators during the course of this week," Dobber said. "We will show the data to the U.K. regulator, the European regulator, and also the FDA in the United States.... The second part is that we need to do the filings... and the regulator needs to have an independent assessment of the data we are showing them."

Meanwhile, it is important to remember all vaccinated participants did not develop the disease, or experience hospitalization or severe disease characteristics caused by COVID, so in all, the company has a "very strong set of data," Dobber said.

The information about the half-dose, full-dose treatment remains "very speculative," but a possible hypothesis about why it works is because the half dose works by "priming the immune system" with a low dose of the medication.

"It was a little bit of a surprise to all of us to see this difference," Dobber said. "We really expected to have a high dose, high dose, very effective. It is very effective, but the half dose, full dose clearly has a better efficacy, and we will do more research in the weeks to come in order to better understand the mechanism here."

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AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine candidate will benefit all people, not only the wealthy," Ruud Dobber, an executive vice president for the pharmaceutical giant, said Monday.
astrazeneca, covid-19, half dose, full dose, efficacy, testing, science
Monday, 23 November 2020 05:24 PM
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