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the first doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine expected in Europe on April 19

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                Johnson & Johnson's Covid-19 vaccine, which requires only a single dose and can be stored in a simple refrigerator, will be delivered to Europe from April 19. 

                                    <p>The American laboratory Johnson & Johnson announced Monday, March 29 that its vaccine against Covid-19 will be delivered to Europe from April 19.  The precious serum was, in mid-March, the fourth to obtain the green light from the European Medicines Agency, after those of Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and AstraZeneca.  It is currently only administered in the United States and South Africa, but it has also been approved in Canada.

This vaccine is the first among those given a WHO green light to require only one injection instead of two, in addition to being able to be stored at refrigerator temperatures. The pharmaceutical group has also undertaken to sell it at cost price.

To increase production and meet demand, Johnson & Johnson has made several agreements in recent months with laboratories and subcontractors in Europe, who will be responsible for its formulation or bottling: These are Sanofi in France, Catalent in Italy and IDT Biologika in Germany. The active substance, which gives the vaccine its effectiveness, will come from the Johnson & Johnson site in Leiden, the Netherlands.

Use of a viral vector

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The EU, which has placed an order for 200 million doses from the American laboratory (with an option for 200 million additional doses), should receive some 55 million doses in the second quarter, Ursula von der Leyen explained in mid-March, the President of the European Commission. The laboratory, for its part, has not made public the exact schedule of its deliveries.

The vaccine is based on a viral vector, according to a technology already used by the company, in particular against the Ebola virus.

It uses as a carrier another low virulent virus, transformed to add genetic instructions from part of the virus responsible for Covid-19. Once in the cells, a typical Sars-CoV-2 protein is produced, educating the immune system to recognize it.

With AFP

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