Volunteer in AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine trial dies in Brazil

A volunteer in AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine trial has died in Brazil, Reuters reported Wednesday.

Anvisa, Brazil’s health authority, received information from an investigation into the death.

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AstraZeneca’s phase 3 clinical trial was put on hold in early September after a study participant in the United Kingdom developed a spinal cord injury. The trials have since resumed in the U.K. as well as in Brazil, though they remain on hold in the U.S.

The vaccine candidate is being developed with the University of Oxford.

In a statement to NBC News, AstraZeneca said that the trial would continue.

“We cannot comment on individual cases in an ongoing trial of the Oxford vaccine as we adhere strictly to medical confidentiality and clinical trial regulations, but we can confirm that all required review processes have been followed,” the statement said. “All significant medical events are carefully assessed by trial investigators, an independent safety monitoring committee and the regulatory authorities. These assessments have not led to any concerns about continuation of the ongoing study.”

Ian Jones, a professor of virology at the University of Reading in the U.K. said that it was likely the death was not vaccine-related.

“Without details it’s impossible to know what has happened in this case but as the trial is continuing, I think we can assume the circumstances of the death were such that it was clearly not vaccine related,” Jones said in a statement.

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