By Carl O’Donnell and Manas Mishra
(Reuters) – Johnson & Johnson said on Tuesday it would take at least a few days for an independent safety panel to evaluate an unexplained illness of a study participant that led to a pause in the company’s COVID-19 vaccine trial.
J&J shares fell more than 2% following news of the pause and safety review. Rival AstraZeneca Plc’s U.S. trial for its coronavirus vaccine candidate – which uses a similar technology – has remained on hold for more than a month after a participant in the company’s UK trial fell ill.
J&J, whose vaccine effort is among the high profile attempts to fight the coronavirus pandemic, said on Monday the illness was being reviewed by an independent data and safety monitoring board as well as by its own clinical and safety team.
The data board, which is also reviewing AstraZeneca’s U.S. trial, is required