New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: British-Swedish pharmaceutical firm AstraZeneca announced on Saturday that the Phase III trials of its coronavirus vaccine candidate has resumed in the United Kingdom after a six-day pause.

In a statement, the company said that the late-stage trails, which were suspended earlier this week, were resumed following confirmation by the Medicines Health Regulatory Authority (MHRA) that it was safe to do so, Reuters reported.

“The standard review process triggered a voluntary pause to vaccination across all global trials to allow review of safety data by independent committees, and international regulators,” AstraZeneca said.

“The UK committee has concluded its investigations and recommended to the MHRA that trials in the UK are safe to resume,” it added.

The Phase III trails of the much-awaited vaccine being jointly developed by Oxford University and AstraZeneca were halted after one of the volunteers got sick with transverse myelitis, a rare neurological condition that results in the inflammation of parts of the spinal cord.

Following the development, the Serum Institute of India (SII), which has partnered with AstraZeneca and Oxford University to manufacture their experimental COVID-19 vaccine in India, has also halted its trails after the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) issued a show-cause notice to the institute. The Phase I and Phase II trails of the vaccine in India have completed and the institute was scheduled to begin the Phase III trials from the next week.

Earlier this week, AstraZeneca's Chief Executive Officer Pascal Soriot had said that despite the pause in trials, he still expects the vaccine to be out by as early as the end of the year.

Posted By: Lakshay Raja