COVID-19 vaccine first human trial reflects possibility of creating 'immunity'

WION Web Team Washington May 18, 2020, 06.49 PM(IST)

Representative image Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

Moderna informed that the Phase-2 trial has already been given the go-ahead by the US Food and Drug Administration

US biotech firm Moderna said today that its vaccine for COVID-19 appeared to generate an immune response similar to the response seen in people who have been infected by the virus and recovered.

Also Read: Vaccine global public good, not for market forces, says France on Sanofi CEO's US tilt

The company said clinical tests of its vaccine against COVID-19 on volunteers showed "positive interim results".

Moderna’s chief medical officer Tal Zaks said: "Interim Phase 1 data, while early, demonstrate that vaccination with mRNA-1273 elicits an immune response of the magnitude caused by natural infection starting with a dose as low as 25 μg."

"The vaccine was generally safe and well tolerated," Moderna said.

“When combined with the success in preventing viral replication in the lungs of a pre-clinical challenge model at a dose that elicited similar levels of neutralising antibodies, these data substantiate our belief that mRNA-1273 has the potential to prevent COVID-19 disease and advance our ability to select a dose for pivotal trials,” Zaks added.

The company informed that the Phase-2 trial has already been given the go-ahead by the US Food and Drug Administration(FDA). Moderna said that phase 3 trials with a large number of volunteers would begin in July.    

"The Moderna team continues to focus on moving as fast as safely possible to start our pivotal Phase 3 study in July," Moderna CEO Stephane Bancel said, adding,"We are investing to scale up manufacturing so we can maximize the number of doses we can produce to help protect as many people as we can from SARS-CoV-2."

The vaccine is being developed along with the National Institutes of Health with the US government having invested half a billion into the research.