WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
- Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine study showed that individuals administered with the serum had developed an immunity.
- The company’s test was among several other more studies that aim to develop a vaccine against COVID-19.
- Expert says Moderna’s trial results have been promising, and it should start the third phase immediately.
According to the initial analysis by the biotech company Moderna, participants who were given the coronavirus initial trial vaccine yielded positive results.
Moderna has linked with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the project of developing the vaccine.
The chief medical officer for Moderna, Dr. Tal Zaks, confirmed to CNN that if upcoming tests came back positive, their vaccine could be ready for the public use around January, adding that the company knows that many people are waiting for the shot for a long time.
The new data was a result of Phase 1 clinical tests, which usually involve quite a few individuals. The study concentrates on how safe the vaccine is, and if it causes a reaction from the immune system.
The NIH spearheaded the research, and its results are yet to be peer-reviewed and distributed through the proper medical journal.
With headquarters at Cambridge, Massachusetts, Moderna is one of eight vaccine developers worldwide conducting human medical tests with a vaccine that fights the coronavirus.
The World Health Organization (WHO) confirms that two other U.S based companies, Inovio and Pfizer, one from Britain, and four more from China are all developing a COVID-19 vaccine.
According to Moderna, it has vaccinated lots of volunteers and calculated the number of antibodies in eight of the participants. All of those eight individuals have naturally developed counteracting immunities to the virus.
And the number of antibodies found in them has either matched or surpassed the levels of those people who’ve recovered from COVID-19 the natural way.
Antibodies couples with the bug, making it incapable of binding with human cells, and Zaks noted that it blocks the virus itself.
Dr. Paul Offit, a member of the (NIH), and not associated with Moderna’s research, said the company’s results are promising.
While the tests had great potential under lab settings, the study did not yet determine if it will be effective in the real-world. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) gave Moderna a clearance to proceed with the second phase of the trials.
The next step will now include hundreds of volunteers, and Moderna intends to begin more extensive clinical trials during Phase 3 trials in July. This time, the test will be conducted with many thousands of people.
Offit commented, though, that given the situation with the coronavirus, it would only make sense if Moderna could jump to phase 3 since it would be improbable to have tested that many people by July.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, Trump’s coronavirus task force top member, estimates that vaccines may be available between 12 to 18 months. This echoes Zaks’ projection over Moderna’s works, saying the shots are ready between January to June next year.
Source: CNN Health