Infectious Diseases

Recruiting Has Begun for the Next Phase of Oxford COVID-19 Vaccine Trials

Posted on 22 May 2020

Having completed over 1000 immunisations of healthy adults in the phase I clinical trial, University of Oxford researchers have now started recruiting volunteers for phase II trials of a human COVID-19 vaccine.

The phase II trial will involve up to 10,260 participants from a wider range of ages in order to assess how well the immune system responds to the vaccine in older people and children (including a small number of adults over 70 and children between the ages of 5 and 12).

Should the results prove promising, a phase III trial would then assess whether the vaccine can confer protection against COVID-19 in a larger number of people, compared with a control vaccine against meningococcus. Phase III trials also are also designed to reveal the existence of any rare, but potentially serious side effects. Results from this trial would be expected to take between 2 and 6 months to obtain, depending on the transmission rate of the virus – the the higher the transmission rate, the more quickly it will become apparent whether the vaccine is effective.

Opinion | How Long Will a Vaccine Really Take? - The New York Times
Possible timeline for hastened vaccine development
Opinion | How Long Will a Vaccine Really Take?. (2020). Retrieved 22 May 2020, from

The vaccine, named ChAdOx1 nCoV-19, is a weakened form of a chimpanzee common cold virus (in this case, an adenovirus) modified to include the Sars-Cov-2 Spike protein – a protein used by the Sars-Cov-2 coronavirus to gain entry into human cells.

More information can be found here:

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