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Intramuscular vaccination with ChAdOx1 nCoV-19/AZD1222 protected rhesus macaques against pneumonia but did not reduce shedding of SARS-CoV-2. Here we investigate whether intranasally administered ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 reduces shedding, using a SARS-CoV-2 virus with the D614G mutation in the spike protein. Viral load in swabs obtained from intranasally vaccinated hamsters was significantly decreased compared to controls and no viral RNA or infectious virus was found in lung tissue, both in a direct challenge and a transmission model. Intranasal vaccination of rhesus macaques resulted in reduced shedding and a reduction in viral load in bronchoalveolar lavage and lower respiratory tract tissue. In conclusion, intranasal vaccination reduced shedding in two different SARS-CoV-2 animal models, justifying further investigation as a potential vaccination route for COVID-19 vaccines.

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