The UK has new agreements with two coronavirus vaccine developers that would add 90 million doses to its stockpile, the Guardian reports. In all, it says the UK government has ordered 340 million doses of six different experimental vaccines.
In the new deals, the UK has ordered 60 million doses from Novavax and 30 million doses from Janssen, which could be delivered by the middle of next year if clinical trials find them to be safe and effective, the Guardian adds. Novavax is developing a vaccine that relies on a synthetic version of the protein SARS-CoV-2 uses to enter cells and recently reported early results indicating it triggers an immune response. Janssen, which is part of Johnson & Johnson, has reported that its adenovirus-based vaccine could elicit an immune response and offer protection in non-human primates.
The Guardian notes that the six different experimental vaccines the UK has ordered rely on four different approaches. "It is very helpful to have a variety of vaccines, both because we do not know how many will either not work well or have serious adverse effects or will not give lasting protection or will not work well in particular groups like the elderly," the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine's Stephen Evans tells it.