'AstraZeneca jab could be limited to certain age groups'

Younger people may be offered alternative vaccines to the AstraZeneca jab, Prof Paul Hunter from the University of East Anglia has said.

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) is set to hold a briefing on the AstraZeneca vaccine following continuing concern about a possible link to extremely rare blood clots later today.

Prof Hunter told BBC World News the pattern of blood clot clusters had been "playing out" in multiple countries.

"Many people now are coming to the conclusions that this association is probably going to be true," he said.

There was no data yet in the public domain breaking down the age or gender of people who had been affected by blood clots "but we are certainly hearing that it's generally occurring in younger adults rather than in older adults so it may well be the case that we decide to start limiting the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine for younger people", Prof Hunter said, but we would need to see the data first.

The UK’s regulator the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) is expected to announce an update in the next few days. It has said that the benefits of the jab continue to outweigh any risk.

There is no currently proven link between the jab and blood clots.