Johnson & Johnson pauses COVID-19 vaccine trial due to unexplained illness – Nicole Wetsman

Illustration by Ana Kova

Johnson & Johnson’s clinical trial of its COVID-19 vaccine was paused after a volunteer came down with an unexplained illness. The company did not disclose what the illness was, citing the participant’s privacy. The illness is still under investigation.

The pause was triggered by the company based on the internal guidelines for the study. Pauses are common in large trials like this one and typically aren’t publicly disclosed. They’re different than clinical holds, which are issued by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and prompt a more extensive evaluation of the trial. Intense public scrutiny of the COVID-19 vaccine development process means any changes — even relatively routine pauses — tend to leak out, and companies are being…

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