AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine to begin clinical trials in China-exec - (The Guardian via NewsPoints Desk)

  • AstraZeneca plans to start early and mid-stage clinical trials of its COVID-19 vaccine candidate in China this year, as reported in The Guardian.

  • The vaccine candidate is already in the final stage of clinical trials in other countries, and AstraZeneca and partner Oxford University expect data from the late-stage trials this year.

  • If successful, they will file for emergency approvals in as many countries as possible at the same time, CEO Pascal Soriot said recently.

  • In China, the company has a deal with Shenzhen Kangtai Biological Products to manufacture the vaccine in the country.

  • Under the agreement, Shenzhen Kangtai will ensure it has annual production capacity of at least 100 million doses of the experimental shot AZD1222 by the end of this year.

  • The vaccine may be approved for use in China by mid-2021 after gathering safety data from Phase I and II trials in China and efficacy data from Phase III testing overseas, according to Leon Wang, head of AstraZeneca's China operations.

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