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LONDON — The World Health Organization says the world is “lucky” there is a broad pipeline of experimental COVID-19 vaccines, with more than 150 at early stages of testing.
At the end of a two-day research meeting, the U.N. health agency says 17 vaccine candidates are in human trials and some might prove effective by the end of the year, although that the timeline of a licensed vaccine was still uncertain.
“We are very encouraged by the progression of these candidate vaccines and we are looking forward to have the results,” said Ana Maria Henao Restrapo, a vaccines expert at WHO.
She says the pharmaceuticals planning advanced tests in humans shared their protocols for proposed trials with the agency; all were randomized experiments. Several experimental vaccines, including one developed by Oxford University and made by AstraZeneca, are expected to soon move into large-scale trials that could provide data about whether they are effective.
“Whether or not we will have a vaccine in the anticipated timeline is still unknown,” Restrapo said.
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