It’s hard to draw many conclusions at this point from the vaccine data published Monday by the University of Oxford, said Dr. Peter Hotez, professor and dean of Tropical Medicine at the US' Baylor College of Medicine, during an interview with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer.
Hotez predicted it will take until the middle of next year to find out if the vaccine actually works.
“Looking at the data coming out of the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine, in a single dose, the vaccine did not seem to do all that much. The levels of virus neutralizing antibody, which many think is a good indicator of whether the vaccines are going to work, were not very high,” Hotez said. “In two doses it seemed to be better, but there were only 10 patients who got the two doses.”
“So, it's really hard to conclude, very much from this,” he said.
Hotez said the results suggest a larger trial is needed.
“And that’s the idea behind Operation Warp Speed. All of these vaccines will start entering phase 3 clinical trials at various times over the next year and then it’ll take a year to accumulate all the data showing the vaccines actually work, as well as that they’re safe ... But keep in mind the first vaccines may not be our best vaccines, added Hotez.
“It’s looking like many of them are just partially protective, potentially preventing people from getting very sick, but not interrupting transmission. So, even then we’re still going to have to maintain ongoing public health control.”
There are 23 Covid-19 vaccines currently in clinical trials globally, according to the World Health Organization.