Volunteer in AstraZeneca COVID-19 Vaccine Trial Dies, Trial to Continue

A volunteer in the clinical trial of the COVID-19 vaccine developed by AstraZeneca with Oxford University has died, the National Health Surveillance Agency (Anvisa) of Brazil announced last October 21, but the trial would continue.

A volunteer in the clinical trial of the COVID-19 vaccine developed by AstraZeneca with Oxford University has died, the National Health Surveillance Agency (Anvisa) of Brazil announced last October 21, but the trial would continue.

Anvisa said it received notification on the death last October 19, but the health regulatory agency and the International Evaluation and Security committee overseeing the clinical trial said that it would continue.

Oxford University confirmed the plan in a statement, “Following careful assessment of this case in Brazil, there have been no concerns about safety of the clinical trial, and the independent review in addition to the Brazilian regulator have recommended that the trial should continue.”

The Brazilian nonprofit organization D’Or Institute for Research and Education (IDOR), which is conducting the trial in Rio de Janeiro, stated that the collected data “did not raise any doubts about the safety of the study.”

IDOR also said that 8,000 volunteers had received either the vaccine or the placebo.

Anvisa did not provide any further details on the volunteer’s death, citing medical confidentiality.

However, reports by Brazil newspaper O Globo and international media company Bloomberg said that the volunteer did not receive the vaccine, citing anonymous sources involved in the matter.

The source O Globo cited also said that the volunteer received the placebo instead.

Media reports also said that the volunteer was 28-year-old Brazilian Doctor João Pedro Rodrigues Feitosa.

The Federal University of Sao Paulo confirmed the volunteer was Brazilian and further said in a statement, “Everything is proceeding as expected, without any record of serious vaccine-related complications involving any of the participating volunteers.”


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