AstraZeneca Plc’s (NASDAQ: AZN) says interim data from U.S. clinical trials in over 32,000 people shows its COVID-19 shot is 79% effective and safe.
What Happened: The vaccine was also shown to be 100% effective at preventing severe disease, death, and hospitalization. Investigators said the vaccine was effective across all ages, including older people.
In the last few days, more than a dozen countries, mainly in Europe, temporarily suspended their use of the AstraZeneca shot after reports linked to blood clots.
On Thursday, the European Medicines Agency concluded that the vaccine did not raise the overall risk of blood clots but could not rule out that it was connected to two very rare types of clots.
France, Germany, Italy, and other countries subsequently resumed their use of the shot on Friday, with senior politicians rolling up their sleeves to show the vaccine was safe.
These new findings can potentially bolster global confidence in the shot after confusion over the vaccine’s actual efficacy and the best dosing regimen, which has impacted vaccination goals, particularly in Europe.
Why It Matters: AstraZeneca said an independent safety committee conducted a specific review of the blood clots in the U.S. trial, as well as cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST), which is an extremely rare blood clot in the brain.
The panel said, “no increased risk of thrombosis or events characterized by thrombosis in participants receiving at least one dose of the vaccine, was observed.
By comparison, Moderna Inc’s (NASDAQ: MRNA) vaccine is more than 94% effective in preventing COVID-19, and Pfizer Inc (NYSE: PFE) – BioNTech SE’s (NASDAQ: BNTX) vaccine is 95% effective.
AstraZeneca said it would continue to analyze the data and prepare for the primary analysis to be submitted to the FDA for emergency use authorization in the coming weeks.
Notably, the Oxford-AstraZeneca shot was 80% effective in preventing COVID in participants aged 65 years and above.
AZN jab also showed a positive immune response against the Brazilian variant of the virus.
Price Action: AZN shares are trading 1.52% higher at $49.96 in premarket hours on the last check Monday.
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