Moderna announced its experimental COVID-19 vaccine showed promising results.
An early stage human trial showed that the vaccine was able to produce antibodies in patients that fight off the virus, a key signal that a vaccine is working, and markets rejoiced, with stocks having their biggest day since early April, and Moderna’s shares closed up 20%.
This was only Phase 1 of a typically three-phased trial. There are “lots of vaccines that look good out of Phase 1 that don’t turn out to be good products,” explains Daniel Salmon, a director at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
If future studies go well, the company’s vaccine could be available to the public as early as January, Dr. Tal Zaks, Moderna’s chief medical officer, told CNN
. “This is absolutely good news and news that we think many have been waiting for for quite some time,” Zaks said. The results of the study, which was led by the National Institutes of Health, have not been peer reviewed or published in a medical journal.
Moderna, based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, is one of eight developers worldwide doing human clinical trials with a vaccine against the novel coronavirus, according to the World Health Organization
. Two others, Pfizer and Inovio, are also in the United States, one is at the University of Oxford in Britain, and four are in China.