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UK Takes Another 'Giant Step' on Vaccine Front

Britain is now administering the world's first AstraZeneca-Oxford COVID vaccinations

(Newser) - Britain on Monday took another giant step in the fight against COVID-19, ramping up its immunization program by giving the first shots in the world from the vaccine created by Oxford University and pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca. Dialysis patient Brian Pinker, 82, was the first to get the new vaccine, administered...

2nd Vaccine OK'd in UK Is Cheaper, Easier to Store

AstraZeneca/Oxford shots will start to be administered in Britain next week

(Newser) - A big update in vaccination efforts from across the pond: In what Prime Minister Boris Johnson is calling a "triumph for British science," regulators in the United Kingdom have given the green light to a second vaccine there, this time for one from AstraZeneca and Oxford University. Why...

AstraZeneca Has Confidence About New Strain

CEO says his vaccine will be as good as the others

(Newser) - The head of drugmaker AstraZeneca, which is developing a coronavirus vaccine widely expected to be approved by UK authorities this week, said Sunday that researchers believe the shot will be effective against a new variant of the virus driving a rapid surge in infections in Britain. Partial results suggest that...

As UK Begins Shots, Progress on US Front

Pfizer candidate clears hurdle ahead of crucial Thursday meeting

(Newser) - It's a big news day for COVID vaccines on three fronts:
  • The UK began its first vaccinations .
  • In the US, health regulators say in their initial review that Pfizer's vaccine is 95% protective, per the AP . The review posted online Tuesday by the FDA comes before a Thursday

After AstraZeneca's Big Vaccine Claim, Questions

90% efficacy was seen in participants given a half-dose by accident

(Newser) - Initial results regarding the AstraZeneca and University of Oxford COVID-19 vaccine had the industry buzzing Monday—but that enthusiasm is beginning to erode. The vaccine was said to be up to 90% effective , quite cheap at $3 to $5 per dose , and able to be stored for months in a...

Organization Questions 'No-Profit' Promise on Vaccine

AstraZeneca cuts deals with governments, partners around the world

(Newser) - AstraZeneca could not have bigger plans for its coronavirus vaccine. The company intends to make its vaccine available in every part of the world and expects to produce 3 billion doses to make that possible. The vaccine, developed by Oxford University, could turn out to be more practical, easier to...

Third Strong Vaccine May Have Big Advantage

AstraZeneca's candidate is up to 90% effective, and it can be easily stored and shipped

(Newser) - A third COVID vaccine candidate is reporting strong results —and this one would be easier to transport and store than the first two. AstraZeneca says interim results show that its vaccine is up to 90% effective, slightly less than the 95% reported by Pfizer and Moderna . But while its...

There's More Good Vaccine News

Oxford-AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine has average effectiveness of 70%

(Newser) - Another COVID-19 vaccine trial is reporting positive news: The vaccine developed by British pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca in collaboration with the University of Oxford is "highly effective" at preventing disease, the pharma giant says in a statement. The vaccine was found to have an average effectiveness of 70%, CNBC reports,...

Vaccine Candidate Has Good News for Seniors

Candidate from AstraZeneca and Oxford sees immune response, few side effects in older adults

(Newser) - Bad news about COVID is easy to find these days, whether in the US or overseas . But now comes a dose of good news from the makers of one of the leading vaccine candidates. AstraZeneca, which is teaming with Oxford University, said Monday that its vaccine produces an immune response...

Bill Gates: US Pandemic Response is 'Shocking'

He also doesn't expect a vaccine before Election Day

(Newser) - Bill Gates has some bad news for President Trump, who has suggested that a coronavirus vaccine could be available by Election Day. Gates tells CNBC that he doesn't see it happening. "None of the vaccines are likely to seek approval in the US before the end of October,...

China Has Notable New Entry in Race for Vaccine

It's the first nasal spray for COVID to proceed to human trials

(Newser) - About three dozen coronavirus vaccine candidates are in human testing around the world, all of them using the standard approach of a needle to deliver an injection. China, however, has just given approval for the first nasal spray to proceed to human trials, reports Bloomberg . One hope is that a...

In Quest for COVID Vaccine, 107K 'Medical Heroes' Emerge

Volunteers coming out in droves to help 4 firms planning on starting phase 3 of clinical trials in fall

(Newser) - In early July, the National Institutes of Health launched a clinical trials network through which it hoped to enroll thousands of volunteers to test potential COVID-19 vaccines. Just a week or so later, more than 107,000 people had signed up. That's a number USA Today says will "...

Cost of This Drug in 2013: $138. Cost Now: $2,979

Horizon Pharma's Vimovo just saw latest price hike, but maker says most will pay less than $10

(Newser) - A painkiller that cost $138 a bottle less than five years ago now hovers at close to $3,000—the latest price hike to put the pharmaceutical industry in the spotlight. CNNMoney reports Horizon Pharma's latest increase on Vimovo, which has seen nearly a dozen such rate rises since...

Pfizer Walks Away From AstraZeneca Takeover Bid

Drops offer to purchase drug company

(Newser) - Pfizer says it does not intend to make a takeover offer for British drugmaker AstraZeneca. Today's announcement comes a week after AstraZeneca's board rejected a proposed $119 billion buyout offer from Pfizer, the world's second-biggest drugmaker by revenue. Pfizer Chairman and CEO Ian Read says the company'...

Disgraced Doctors Land at Big Pharma

Hundreds of pitchmen found to have blemished records

(Newser) - Pharmaceutical companies say they hire highly respected doctors as their white-coat sales force, peddling their drugs to other physicians. But a Pro Publica investigation has discovered that hundreds of these pitchmen have been accused of professional misconduct, been disciplined by state boards, or lacked credentials. Medical board records in the...

Swedes Launch Nobel Prize Bribery Probe

Drug firm accused of influencing this year's pick in medicine

(Newser) - Swedish prosecutors are investigating claims of corruption in the awarding of this year's Nobel Prize in medicine, the Toronto Star reports. German scientist Harald zur Hausen won part of the prize for discovering the link between human papilloma viruses and cervical cancer. The discovery could make a fortune for drug...

Colon Cancer Gene Discovered

Cancer growth gene identified

(Newser) - Researchers have discovered a key gene that may contribute to the growth of colon cancer and could provide a target for new therapies, Bloomberg reports. The gene, CDK8, controls a cell growth switch that researchers think might spur the development of many tumors. The discovery may help up to 50%...

Beta Blockers 'Killing Patients'

Research uncovers dire effects of pre-surgery drug

(Newser) - Beta blockers routinely given to patients before surgery do far more harm than good, with patients 35% more likely to die within a month than those given a dummy pill, according to a study reported in the Lancet.  While the blood pressure drugs did cut the number of heart...

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