Volunteer dies after continuing in Brazil in AstraZeneca / Oxford Coronovirus vaccine trial

A researcher helped diagnose suspected coronavirus cases in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, earlier this year.


Douglas Magno / Agnes France-Presse / Getty Images

Brazilian health regulator Avisa said on Wednesday that SAO poly-clinical trials of the Kovid-19 vaccine being developed by the University of Oxford and AstraZeneca plc will continue in Brazil.

Oxford University said it had carefully evaluated the case in Brazil and had no concerns about the safety of the trial. AstraZeneca said the independent evaluation of the case was not of any concern.

Governments around the world are debating the timeline to introduce the Kovid-19 vaccines to the public, as drug manufacturers speed up development. Daniela Hernández of the WSJ reports the potential health risks associated with fast-tracking vaccines. Photo: Siphiwe Sibeko / Associated Press

Anvisa said earlier on Wednesday that she had been notified of the death on Monday and was investigating. It did not provide any information about the identity of the volunteer or whether the person had taken a placebo dose or the actual dose of the vaccine. The Brazilian press reported that the volunteer was a 28-year-old man from Rio de Janeiro who died of complications of Kovid-19.

“The fact that the trial was not suspended may indicate that the person had taken a placebo dose,” said Carlos Fortaleza, an epidemiologist at São Paulo State University.

AstraZeneca shares lost 1.7% but later lost.

Brazil has earmarked more than $ 350 million to purchase Oxford University’s vaccine, which will be produced and distributed by the country’s Fucroz Scientific Institute based in Rio. Sao Paulo is also working on another vaccine in partnership with privately owned Chinese company Synovac.

Write [email protected] on Luciana Magalhaes and Samantha Pearson in Samantha @ [email protected]

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