Breakthrough: Moderna Vaccine Protects 16 Monkeys Against COVID-19

The ground seems to be ready for a defense for humans against the coronavirus pandemic. Moderna Inc.’s vaccine candidate protected 16 monkeys in a trial. Its result in 30,000 humans is awaited, reported livemint.

Two injections of the vaccine protected against heavy exposure to the virus at two different levels of dosage, Moderna said in findings published on Tuesday in the New England Journal of Medicine, reported livemint.

The results on primates

  • No sign of creating enhanced disease
  • No viral replication was detectable in their noses two days after being challenged with the virus
  • No viral replication was seen in the lung fluid of 7 of 8 animals in both dose groups
  • All 16 monkeys showed at least some sign of protection, with limited lung inflammation seen in the lungs of both groups

The results, if they hold up in humans, suggest that the vaccine may be able to protect against Covid-19 in both the upper and lower airways, reported livemint quoting the study.

Phase 3 trial to determine the safety and efficacy of the vaccine will begin producing data in November or December. The U.S. government is providing $955 million to help fund the vaccine’s development.

Moderna Inc is planning to price its coronavirus vaccine at $50 to $60 per course, which is $11 more than another vaccine from Pfizer Inc and BioNTech, livemint quoted Financial Times as reporting on Tuesday, citing unnamed sources.

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