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Source: Reuters
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  • Johnson & Johnson has been forced to pause its COVID-19 vaccine trial after one of the participants suffered an unexplained illness
  • The healthcare giant said it’s not sure at this stage whether the sick patient was receiving the vaccine or a placebo
  • The New York Stock Exchange lister said the pause was temporary as it reviewed the participant’s symptoms
  • The vaccine being developed by Johnson & Johnson is one of four late-stage immunisations which are in the advanced stage-three phase
  • One of the other advanced vaccines being developed by Oxford University had to be halted twice due to similar reasons

Healthcare giant Johnson & Johnson has been forced to pause its COVID-19 vaccine trial after one of its participants suffered an unexplained illness.

In a statement to shareholders, the New York Stock Exchange lister confirmed the trial to potentially eradicate the novel virus has been paused.

But, Johnson & Johnson states the pause is only temporary while it reviews the affected patient’s symptoms.

“We have temporarily paused further dosing in all our COVID-19 vaccine candidate clinical trials,” the company stated.

“Following our guidelines, the participant’s illness is being reviewed and evaluated,” it added.

At this stage, the healthcare stock said it was not sure whether the sick patient had been administered the vaccine, or if they had taken a placebo.

The company is also refusing to reveal the illness or symptoms the affected participant is suffering from, citing privacy concerns.

The pause in Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 trial comes as global cases of the coronavirus top 37.8 million, including over 1.08 million deceased.

This particular trial by the healthcare leader is considered one of the most advanced COVID-19 vaccine trials being conducted across the globe.

It’s also one of only four programs which have managed to advance their vaccines to the point of third-stage clinical trials.

Among the other leaders is an immunisation being developed from Oxford University and AstraZenecca, which also had to be paused last month.

The Australian Government has signed on to buy the Oxford vaccine, as well as one being developed by the University of Queensland.

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