AstraZeneca Plc said on Sunday Britain’s health regulator had started an accelerated review of its potential coronavirus vaccine.
“We confirm the MHRA’s (Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency) rolling review of our potential COVID-19 vaccine,” an AstraZeneca spokesman said.
In rolling reviews, regulators are able to see clinical data in real time and have dialogue with drug makers on manufacturing processes and trials to accelerate the approval process.
The approach is designed to speed up evaluations of promising drugs or vaccines during a public health emergency.
AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine is being developed along with the University of Oxford. Bloomberg reported on Friday that MHRA had also begun an accelerated review for the COVID-19 vaccine candidate from Pfizer Inc.
AstraZeneca and Pfizer are among the frontrunners in the race to develop a vaccine for the coronavirus, with the race also including Johnson & Johnson and Moderna Inc. Their vaccine candidates are in late-stage trials, interim data from which are expected in the coming weeks.
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