"This vaccine's efficacy and safety confirm that it will be highly effective against COVID-19 and will have an immediate impact on this public health emergency," AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soriot said in a statement.
"Furthermore, the vaccine’s simple supply chain and our no-profit pledge and commitment to broad, equitable and timely access means it will be affordable and globally available, supplying hundreds of millions of doses on approval,” he added.
The announcement makes AstraZeneca the latest drug producer to report positive interim data in a scientific race to curb the COVID-19 pandemic, the Reuters news agency reported.
Data published on Thursday showed that AstraZeneca and Oxford University's potential COVID-19 vaccine produced a strong immune response in older adults, with researchers expecting to release late-stage trial results by Christmas, according to a previous report by Reuters.
Poland’s prime minister said earlier this month that millions of vaccines against the coronavirus were likely to reach his country next spring as part of a European deal with drug makers.
The European Union this month struck a deal to buy up to 300 million doses of a potential coronavirus vaccine from US pharmaceutical firm Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech.
Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said on Friday, November 13, that his government has set up a working group with experts from Pfizer amid efforts to make a COVID-19 vaccine available to Poles as quickly as possible.
In mid-November, Morawiecki also talked with executives from AstraZeneca as part of efforts to secure a COVID-19 vaccine for Poland, state news agency PAP has reported.
Meanwhile, US drug maker Moderna announced last Monday that its experimental vaccine was 94.5 percent effective in preventing COVID-19 based on interim data from a late-stage trial.
The European Commission on Tuesday, November 17, authorized a deal with German biotech firm CureVac to secure up to 405 million doses of its potential COVID-19 vaccine for European citizens.
EU officials have voiced hope for a deal with Moderna soon.
Source: IAR, PAP, Reuters, astrazeneca.com