Moderna Inc said on Monday that laboratory research showed that a booster dose of its Covid-19 vaccine was protective against the fast-spreading Omicron strain, and that the current version of the vaccine will remain Moderna’s “first line of defence against Omicron.”
The choice to focus on the current vaccine, mRNA-1273, was influenced in part by the speed with which the recently identified variant is spreading, according to the vaccine developer. The business stated that it still intends to create an Omicron vaccine and aims to begin clinical trials early next year.
Moderna’s stock was trading at $314.42 in premarket activity, up approximately 6.5 per cent.
“What we have available right now is 1273,” Dr. Paul Burton, Moderna’s Chief Medical Officer, said in an interview. “It’s highly effective, and it’s extremely safe. I think it will protect people through the coming holiday period and through these winter months, when we’re going to see the most severe pressure of Omicron.”
A two-dose course of the vaccine produced modest neutralising antibodies against the Omicron variant, according to the company, but a 50 microgram booster dosage raised neutralising antibodies against the variant by 37 times. Antibody levels rose to more than 80 times pre-boost levels after a larger, 100 microgram booster dose of the same vaccine.
Blood from persons who had received the vaccine was tested against a pseudovirus made to look like the Omicron variant in the study, which has not yet been peer reviewed. It’s similar to the evidence presented by Anthony Fauci, a leading infectious disease expert in the United States. find out more
Governments and regulators, according to Burton, will have to decide whether they want the increased level of protection that a 100 microgram dose may provide.
The 100 microgram dose was generally safe and well tolerated, according to the company, albeit there was a modest increase in the number of adverse responses.
Moderna also compared the vaccine’s efficacy to that of its prototype boosters, which target many prior variations of concern, and found similar results.
In October, the 50 microgram booster of Moderna’s vaccine was approved by US regulators. Moderna’s vaccine contains 100 micrograms in the first two doses.
The Moderna and Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines have both been related to uncommon occurrences of cardiac inflammation in young males. Moderna’s vaccine, according to several studies, is more likely to trigger cardiac inflammation at a greater rate.
The World Health Organization said on Saturday that Omicron, a highly contagious form initially discovered last month in southern Africa and Hong Kong, has spread throughout the globe and been reported in 89 countries.
It stated that in regions with community transmission, the number of Omicron cases doubles in 1.5 to 3 days, but that much remains unknown about the variant, particularly the severity of the illness it produces.
(Adapted from MoneyControl.com)