Scarborough Hospital’s trust part of pioneering Covid vaccine study

Scarborough Hospital’s trust has been picked to trial a pioneering coronavirus vaccine.

By Sarah Fitton
Thursday, 6th May 2021, 9:51 am
Updated Thursday, 6th May 2021, 9:52 am

The new study, which will see York and Scarborough Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trustworking with the University of York and Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust, is the first to test a plant-derived Covid-19 vaccine candidate

Launched by Medicago, a biopharmaceutical company based in Canada, and GlaxoSmithKline, it will involve 30,000 adults globally and about 150 people locally.

These will be healthy adults, aged between 18 and 40 , who have not already had a Covid-19 vaccine.

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Vaccinations at Scarborough Rugby Club. Stock Image.

York is one of 14 sites in the UK running the study, along with many more in America, Canada, Europe and Latin America.

Based at the University of York, it will involve up to 10 planned visits to the clinic over a two-year period.

Lydia Harris, Head of Research and Development at York and Scarborough Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “York is rapidly expanding its research capabilities.

“The quality of our researchers, facilities and patient groups are allowing us to engage effectively in cutting edge research at an international level. We have come a long way in a very short period of time.

“Our staff are doing incredible work to support Covid-19 research studies and we are very proud to have made significant contributions to this global effort.”

She said the Trust’s success in contributing to other Covid-19 studies has led to it being invited to take part in the vaccine trial.

Professor Charles Lacey from the Hull York Medical School, who is the principal investigator and will be leading the local team, added: “Clinical studies are important for medical advances. Current available vaccines are only available because of research study volunteers.

“Although there are several approved Covid-19 vaccines available, research is ongoing to provide more options since all vaccines may work differently in providing protection against Covid-19.”

Researchers will compare a placebo vaccine with the study vaccine, with participants crossing over during the trial and receiving both.

Participants will not know when they are receiving the placebo or the investigational vaccine.

The study does not need any more volunteers.