Moderna says its vaccine protects 94.6% from Covid-19

Moderna says its vaccine protects 94.6% from Covid-19
Moderna, an American biotechnology company, said that its vaccine is nearly 95 percent effective in preventing Covid-19 based on early data from a late-stage clinical trial.

This is the second US-based company in a week after Pfizer said that its vaccine demonstrated 90% efficacy against Covid-19.

The encouraging outcome of hectic research strengthens the hope that world will soon get the vaccine and help end the pandemic.

Moderna, which is conducting the “COVE study” in collaboration with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), is planning to apply for approval from the government to use the vaccine in coming few weeks.

“This is a pivotal moment in the development of our COVID-19 vaccine candidate. Since early January, we have chased this virus with the intent to protect as many people around the world as possible. All along, we have known that each day matters. This positive interim analysis from our Phase 3 study has given us the first clinical validation that our vaccine can prevent COVID-19 disease, including severe disease,” said Stéphane Bancel, Chief Executive Officer of Moderna.

The trial involved 30,000 people ages 18 and older in the US with half being given two doses of the vaccine, four weeks apart. The rest had dummy injections.

This first interim analysis was based on 95 cases, of which 90 cases of COVID-19 were observed in the placebo group versus 5 cases observed in the mRNA-1273 group, resulting in a point estimate of vaccine efficacy of 94.5% (p <0.0001), said the official statement

A secondary endpoint analyzed severe cases of COVID-19 and included 11 severe cases  in this first interim analysis. All 11 cases occurred in the placebo group and none in the mRNA-1273 vaccinated group.

The 95 confirmed cases included 15 older adults (ages 65+) and 20 participants identifying as being from diverse communities (including 12 Hispanic or LatinX, 4 Black or African Americans, 3 Asian Americans and 1 multiracial).

By the end of 2020, the company expects to have approximately 20 million doses of mRNA-1273 ready to ship in the U.S.

“The company remains on track to manufacture 500 million to 1 billion doses globally in 2021,” read the statement.