ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccination prevents SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia in rhesus macaques
Neeltje van Doremalen,
Jyothi N. Purushotham,
Julia R. Port,
Elizabeth R. Allen,
Brandi N. Williamson,
Patrick W. Hanley,
Emmie de Wit,
Sarah C. Gilbert,
Posted 13 May 2020
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2020.05.13.093195
Posted 13 May 2020
Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) emerged in December 20191,2 and is responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic3. Vaccines are an essential countermeasure urgently needed to control the pandemic4. Here, we show that the adenovirus-vectored vaccine ChAdOx1 nCoV-19, encoding the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2, is immunogenic in mice, eliciting a robust humoral and cell-mediated response. This response was not Th2 dominated, as demonstrated by IgG subclass and cytokine expression profiling. A single vaccination with ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 induced a humoral and cellular immune response in rhesus macaques. We observed a significantly reduced viral load in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid and respiratory tract tissue of vaccinated animals challenged with SARS-CoV-2 compared with control animals, and no pneumonia was observed in vaccinated rhesus macaques. Importantly, no evidence of immune-enhanced disease following viral challenge in vaccinated animals was observed. ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 is currently under investigation in a phase I clinical trial. Safety, immunogenicity and efficacy against symptomatic PCR-positive COVID-19 disease will now be assessed in randomised controlled human clinical trials. ### Competing Interest Statement SCG is a board member of Vaccitech and named as an inventor on a patent covering use of ChAdOx1-vectored vaccines and a patent application covering a SARS-CoV-2 (nCoV-19) vaccine. Teresa Lambe is named as an inventor on a patent application covering a SARS-CoV-2 (nCoV-19) vaccine. The remaining authors declare no competing interests.
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