PARIS : TWO coronavirus vaccine candidates have proven safe for humans and produced strong immune reactions among patients involved in two separate clinical trials, doctors said on Monday.

The first trial among more than a thousand adults in Britain found that the vaccine induced ''strong antibody and T cell immune responses'' against the novel coronavirus.

A separate trial in China involving more than 500 people showed most had developed widespread antibody immune response.

The studies, published in The Lancer medical journal, constitutes a major step on the road towards a  Covid-19 vaccine that is effective and safe for widespread use.

The authors of the studies said they encountered few adverse side effects from the vaccine candidates.

They did, however, caution that more research was needed, particularly among older adults, who are disproportionately at risk of dying of Covid-19.

C0-author Sarah Gilbert from the University of Oxford said the results ''hold promise''.

''If our vaccine is effective, it is a promising option as these types of vaccine can be manufactured at large scale.''

The pandemic has seen an unprecedented mobilization of funding and research to rush through, a vaccine that can protect billions of people worldwide.

More than 20 candidate vaccines are currently being tested on humans.

Both studies were phase-2 trials, which test whether the vaccine provokes an immune response and can be well tolerated by patients.

For its trials, the team at Oxford used a genetically modified strain of the common cold virus that infects chimpanzees.

They manipulated the virus to train cells to recognize the viral spike protein, which helps teach the immune system to recognize Covid-19. [AFP]


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