Symptoms that prompted the University of Oxford and partner AstraZeneca to pause trials evaluating their experimental coronavirus vaccine probably weren’t related to the shot itself, according to documents sent to participants.

Safety reviews were carried out when participants in the Oxford study developed unexplained neurological symptoms including limb weakness or “changed sensation”, a participant information sheet posted online by Oxford shows.

The interruption highlights the uncertainties researchers face on the road to developing a vaccine.

The interruption highlights the uncertainties researchers face on the road to developing a vaccine.Credit:Bloomberg

“After independent review, these illnesses were either considered unlikely to be associated with the vaccine or there was insufficient evidence to say for certain that the illnesses were or were not related to the vaccine,” the letter reads.

“In each of these cases, after considering the information, the independent reviewers recommended that vaccinations should continue.”

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