COVID-19 Vaccine Successful in Some Patients, Moves to Larger Studies

May 19, 2020
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Early results from a Moderna vaccine proved successful in a small group of patients, resulting in heightened immune response and safe administration.

Moderna, which is a Cambridge, Massachusetts company that manufactured the vaccine, announced on Monday that it saw encouraging results from its phase 1 clinical trial. The drug has been sent on to be tested in larger studies, NBC News reports.

The initial trial, which involved 45 people, saw 8 people developing neutralizing antibodies. These antibodies are key to providing protection against the coronavirus.

During the study, each of the 45 participants received two doses of the drug about a month apart from each other. They were given one of three dosages: 25 micrograms, 100 micrograms and 250 micrograms.

Moderna reported that those who received the two lower doses of the drug developed the antibodies needed to fight coronavirus within two weeks of the second dose. There are still many questions around what these antibodies might offer in terms of actually fighting the virus.

The only side effect noted was some redness around the vaccination site.

"We could not be happier about this interim data," Moderna CEO Stephane Bancel said during a conference call with investors. He indicated that the vaccine "has a high probability to provide protection from COVID-19 disease in humans."

While phase 1 trials aim to test a drug's safety, phase 2 will test the efficacy of the drug.

Still, other drug options are being tested at Oxford University and at a company called Inovio in Pennsylvania.

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