Wednesday, 25 Nov 2020

US Moderna Covid vaccine ‘is 94.5% effective’ as hopes rise for end of pandemic

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A US firm claims its coronavirus vaccine could prevent 94.5% of people from getting the disease.

Data from Moderna suggests its vaccine works across all age groups, including the elderly.

The UK has not placed an order for the vaccine – which works in a similar way to Pfizer's and is said to be generally safe and well-tolerated – and it is unclear whether the British Government can get any stock.

Moderna’s final-stage critical trial involves 30,000 people in the US.

It included 95 participants with confirmed cases of Covid-19, of which 90 had received the placebo and five the active vaccine.

There were 11 cases of severe coronavirus in the trial, but none occurred in those who were immunised.

Scientists said the news bodes well for other Covid-19 vaccines, with the one for Oxford University and UK pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca due to report in the coming days or weeks.

Moderna intends to submit an application for an Emergency Use Authorisation with the US Food and Drug Administration shortly and will submit further data on the vaccine's effectiveness and safety.

Any side effects were mild or moderate in severity, Moderna said.

Severe events after the first dose included injection site pain and after the second dose included fatigue, myalgia (muscle pain), arthralgia (joint pain), headache, pain, and redness at the injection site.

But these effects of the injection were generally short-lived, Moderna said.

Stephane Bancel, chief executive officer of Moderna, said: "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 Covis-19 disease, including severe disease."

  • Coronavirus

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