AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine trial volunteer in Brazil dies; testing to continue
26 October 2020
Brazilian health authority Anvisa on Wednesday reported the death of a volunteer in a clinical trial of the Covid-19 vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University. The regulator also said it had received data from an investigation into the matter.
Anvisa did not provide any further details, citing medical confidentiality of those involved in trials, but said testing of the vaccine would continue.
Separately, the Federal University of Sao Paulo, which is helping coordinate phase 3 clinical trials in Brazil, said the volunteer was Brazilian but did not elaborate.
The University of Oxford’s Brazilian trial of its vaccine candidate will continue after the death of a volunteer, the university said, adding an independent review had revealed no safety concerns.
“Following careful assessment of this case in Brazil, there have been no concerns about safety of the clinical trial and the independent review in addition to the Brazilian regulator have recommended that the trial should continue,” a spokesman for the university said in a statement.
The vaccine has been licensed to AstraZeneca.
The Brazilian government has plans to purchase the UK vaccine and produce it at its biomedical research center FioCruz in Rio de Janeiro, while a competing vaccine from China's Sinovac is being tested by Sao Paulo state's research center Butantan Institute.
Brazil has the second deadliest outbreak of coronavirus, with more than 154,000 killed by COVID-19, following only the United States. It is the third worst outbreak in terms of cases, with more than 5.2 million infected, after the United States and India.