Next phase of coronavirus vaccine clinical trial underway, shows promising early results
Plans are underway for the next phase of a clinical trial for a coronavirus vaccine that is having promising early results and has excited the stock market.
These results do not prove this vaccine works, but they’re a very positive sign.
The American biotech company behind it now says a vaccine could be federally approved for consumers before the end of the year.
Optimism is running high after the most encouraging results yet from a coronavirus clinical trial.
“They are a really strong signal that this vaccine is on the right path,” said Dr. Stephen Hoge, president of Moderna.
Hoge says all 45 of the patients who took an experimental vaccine are safe.
Preliminary data for eight of those patients indicates they developed antibodies that neutralized the virus, potentially providing some level of immunity.
Also, a study involving mice showed the experimental vaccine stopped the virus from replicating in their lungs.
Jennifer Haller, a 44-year-old mother of two from Seattle, was the first person to get the vaccine in March.
“It’s a bright light for everybody in this country and across the world that we’re seeing success here,” said Haller.
29-year-old Ian Chaydon was another volunteer.
“There’s some things to be hopeful about, but there’s still a lot of patience that’s going to be needed here,” said Chaydon.
Public health experts have been saying that any vaccine was at least 12 to 18 months away, but Moderna’s timeline is even more ambitious.
“We hope if everything goes to plan that we could have a vaccine by early next year or even by the end of this year,” said Hoge.
Some health experts urged caution, saying they want to see more patient data and detailed findings than Moderna has offered.
But the news was enough for the financial sector.
Stocks soared more than 900 points, the market’s largest gain in more than a month.
Moderna is now planning the next, larger phase of its clinical trial in July.
One hurdle? recruiting the number of test subjects needed.
“The challenge is we’re chasing an epidemic, a pandemic, and executing a study in that environment and being able to accrue those cases so that you can show that statistical benefit will take some time,” said Hoge.
This is just one of the dozens of companies around the world in the race for that vaccine. but right now...it appears to be at the head of the pack.
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