Second Covid-19 Vaccine Shown To Be 95% Effective

Grant Boone
November 21, 2020

Moderna intends to submit for an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the coming weeks.

United States biotech company Moderna on Monday announced a potential Covid-19 vaccine, which has been shown to be 94.5 per cent effective at protecting people from coronavirus, according to interim results from late-stage clinical trials.

"We believe that our investments in mRNA delivery technology and manufacturing process development will allow us to store and ship our Covid-19 vaccine candidate at temperatures commonly found in readily available pharmaceutical freezers and refrigerators", said Juan Andres, Chief Technical Operations and Quality Officer at Moderna. These data are subject to change based on ongoing analysis of further Phase 3 COVE study data and final analysis.

The preliminary data is based on an evaluation of 95 confirmed Covid-19 infections among the trial's 30,000 participants.

The COVE study includes more than 11,000 participants from communities of color, Moderna said, representing 37% of the study population, which is similar to the diversity of the U.S.at large.

The markets spiked as soon as the news came out, with the FTSE 100 rising 1% to 6,432, while Moderna shot up 14% to US$101.95 in premarket trading.

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The US drugmaker said it was informed by the Data Safety Monitoring Board that its vaccine, mRNA-1273, has met the statistical criteria required for the study.

Last week, pharmaceutical giant Pfizer announced its vaccine was over 90% effective in treating the respiratory virus.

Another significant difference between the two leading vaccines: Moderna says its vaccine remains stable at 36 to 46 degrees Fahrenheit (2 to 8 degrees Celsius), and can be stored for six months at minus 4 degrees F (minus 20 degrees C), versus minus 94 degrees F (minus 70 degrees C) for BNT162b2.

All the vaccines that are being trialled work by generating immune responses to the same part of the coronavirus as the RNA vaccine that has announced some interim early results, he said. All 11 cases occurred in the placebo group and none in the mRNA-1273 vaccinated group. The majority of adverse events were mild or moderate in severity.

Following fast on the heels of Pfizer's announcement of its COVID-19 vaccine efficacy, Moderna is also sharing positive results from its Phase 3 trial on Monday.

After the first dose, about three percent of people had injection site pain classed as severe.

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