Moderna to Commence 3rd Stage Trial of COVID-19 Vaccine by July

Moderna to Commence 3rd Stage Trial of COVID-19 Vaccine by July

Published12 Jun 2020, 11:32 AM IST
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2 min read

US-based Moderna Inc will commence the third-stage clinical analysis of its coronavirus vaccine. Over 30,000 people will be roped in for the human trials in July, reports Bloomberg. It was the first company to launch human trials for COVID patients in the US in collaboration with US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).

On Thursday, the company revealed they have already registered 350 people for testing, a group of 300 healthy adults and 30 older adults.

The principal intent of the study is to determine if the vaccine blocks COVID-19 from developing, or at least prevents the more severe symptoms of the disease and hospitalisation. The company has previously claimed that they will be in a position to offer the first limited doses of the drug to healthcare workers as early as fall.

While sharing its preliminary results for phase one trials, the company had claimed their vaccine appears to be safe and able to stimulate an immune response against the infection in the first 8 healthy volunteers.

The technology in use is relatively new - it involves using genetic material from the virus called mRNA. This method has not been used to create an vaccine so far.

It uses a genetic platform called mRNA, short for messenger RNA, which directs the body’s cells to stimulate the immune system. The vaccine, developed using previous studies of related coronaviruses such as SARS and MERS, has already shown promise in animal models.

The Phase 2 testing involved around 600 healthy volunteers.

It has collaborated with Lonza Ltd., a Swiss biotech company, to manufacture up to one billion doses of the vaccine per year.

Over 100 candidate vaccines are in development right now. Recent estimates suggest it could take at least 12-18 months till we actually have one available for use. But this itself could be record-breaking speed. For instance, the mumps vaccine, which was the fastest ever approved — took four years to develop.

Several experts have indicated that we will need not one, but several vaccines to tackle the coronavirus. It's manufacturing and distribution will be key.

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(This story was auto-published from a syndicated feed. No part of the story has been edited by The Quint.)

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