Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine effective in animal trials

Johnson & Johnson vaccine in phase I/II human trials in U.S. and Belgium

DETROIT – Another coronavirus vaccine is reporting encouraging results, this time it’s the shot being developed by Johnson & Johnson.

Early research published in the journal “Nature” found it protected primates from COVID-19 with a single dose.

The pharmaceutical company said a single dose triggered a strong immune response in the six primates who received it.

When the monkeys were exposed to the coronavirus, five out of the six had no detectable levels of virus -- the sixth had only low levels in its nose.

Johnson & Johnson has already begun phase one and two trials in humans in the United States and Belgium. These trials will include over 1,000 healthy adults.

The study is testing the efficacy and safety of a single dose as well as a booster dose.

If a single dose is effective, it would double the number of people who could receive the vaccine.

Dr. Stephen Hahn, the Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, said the safety of any potential vaccine remains top priority.

“Things have been moving very quickly,” Hahn said. “I know our team is looking at data in real time from these trials, and that should help us expedite this. But the most important message is we’re not going to cut corners on this. We’re going to look at that data and make the right decision for the American people.”

Phase three trials are expected to begin in September.

MORE: Read more COVID-19 coverage

About the Authors:

Kimberly Gill joined the Local 4 News team in November 2014. She was named Personality of the Year in 2009 by the Ohio Broadcaster’s Hall of Fame. She’s also a two-time Emmy winner.

Dane is a producer and media enthusiast. He previously worked freelance video production and writing jobs in Michigan, Georgia and Massachusetts. Dane graduated from the Specs Howard School of Media Arts.