Johnson & Johnson Announces Single Dose COVID-19 Vaccine Is 66 percent Effective

Johnson & Johnson Announces Single Dose COVID-19 Vaccine Is 66 percent Effective

It will file for US Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) in the same timeframe, with shipment expected to commence as soon as it is authorized.

But they were significantly less effective at preventing Covid-19 in trial participants in South Africa, where the potent new variant is widespread, compared with countries in which this mutation is still rare, according to preliminary data released by the companies.

Johnson & Johnson said the vaccine had 85% efficacy in severe coronavirus cases and 66% efficacy in moderate and severe cases.

Following Mkhize's unexpected announcement, this means that the country has secured the supply of over 40 million vaccine doses, which brings it much closer to the goal of vaccinating two-thirds of the population. In the United States, where the South African variant was first reported this week, efficacy reached 72%, compared with just 57% in South Africa, where the new variant, known as B 1.351, made up 95% of the Covid-19 cases reported in the trial.

Moderna, a US biotechnology company, said earlier this week that its vaccine is expected to be protective against the variants, but that it is advancing a vaccine booster candidate against the South African strain into preclinical studies.

Novavax said on Thursday that it began working on new vaccines against emerging strains early this month and expects to select ideal candidates in the coming days, before starting clinical testing in the second quarter of the year.

Stanley C. Erck, CEO of Novavax, said: "NVX-CoV2373 has the potential to play an important role in solving this global public health crisis".

The health secretary, Matt Hancock, said: "This is yet more good news from Janssen on vaccines".

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The COVID-19 vaccines purchased by South Africa will comprise two doses, administered one to three weeks apart.

Efficacy of the vaccine in Latin America. The vaccine did better at preventing disease in the USA - 72% - and less well in South Africa - 57% efficacy.

The Janssen vaccine uses a common cold virus that has been engineered to make it harmless.

Efficacy by strain was calculated at 95.6 percent against the original coronavirus strain, and 85.6 percent against B.1.1.7.

The vaccine was one of six candidates backed by a United States government project formerly known as Operation Warp Speed, which has provided the company with US$1.75 billion (S$2.33 billion).

Overall efficacy was 49.4 percent in this trial, but the figure rose to 60 percent among the 94 percent of trial participants who were HIV-negative.

Pfizer and Moderna have previously said their vaccines remain effective against the variants, but their studies were based on laboratory research.

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