The University of Oxford’s and our partners AstraZeneca have today announced that one billion doses of the ChAdOx1 nCov-19 coronavirus vaccine have been released, to more than 170 countries, marking a key milestone as part of the University and AstraZeneca’s joint vision to make the available to the world, on a not-for-profit basis for the world during the pandemic, and in perpetuity for low- and middle-income countries.
AstraZeneca, with their extensive world-wide development and manufacturing capabilities, have been able to have the vaccine approved and licenced for use in over 170 countries, with over 20 manufacturing sites across the world, including the Serum Institute of India, working together to release the one billion doses worldwide.
As the manufacturing of adenovirus vector vaccines is complex and requires significant investment in infrastructure and expertise to ensure the safety and quality of the vaccine, we are working together with AstraZeneca to ensure that significant technology transfer happens between the global manufacturing sites and their supply chains.
Louise Richardson, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford, said:
‘On behalf of my colleagues across Oxford I would like to offer my warmest congratulations to AstraZeneca for the extraordinary accomplishment of releasing one billion doses of our life saving vaccine. By distributing this vaccine at cost, they have made an admirable and exemplary contribution to global health. We are delighted to be in partnership with them.’
Dame Sarah Gilbert, Saïd Professor of Vaccinology, and co-developer of the vaccine, said:
‘We started to create this vaccine in January 2020 without knowing if it would ever be needed. To have reached one billion doses released only 18 months later is a phenomenal achievement on the part of AstraZeneca, who have co-ordinated manufacturing at multiple sites around the world to reach this milestone.
‘It was made possible by many years of research at Oxford University in the production of the vaccine platform technology, developing a manufacturing process and conducting clinical trials with other ChAdOx1-vectored vaccines.’
Sir Andy Pollard, Professor of Paediatric Infection and Immunity, and Director of the Oxford Vaccine Group, said:
‘There is huge satisfaction and pride for the vaccine researchers, and the members of the public who took part in the trials, to have brought a billion doses of a life-saving vaccine to the world.
‘We also pay tribute to the superhuman efforts of the teams at AstraZeneca and Serum Institute of India who are producing a phenomenal number of doses 24 hours a day and getting them to vaccine clinics in more than 170 countries. There is still so much to do, and all in the supply chain are pushing on knowing the next billion people are still waiting for their doses.’
Adrian Hill, Director of the Jenner Institute, said:
‘This extraordinary manufacturing achievement, supplying over 170 countries with a billion doses of vaccine within seven months of licensure, reflects important improvements in manufacturing process yield made in Oxford, AstraZeneca and the Serum Institute of India last year, and our engagement from March 2020 onwards with some of the world’s largest vaccine manufacturers.’