US biotechnology company Moderna’s experimental vaccine to prevent COVID-19 induced robust immune response and rapidly controlled the novel coronavirus in the upper and lower airways of monkeys exposed to SARS-CoV-2, according to a study published on Tuesday.
The candidate vaccine, mRNA-1273, was co-developed by scientists at Moderna and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) in the US.
The study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, complements recently reported interim results from an NIAID-sponsored Phase 1 clinical trial of mRNA-1273.
On Monday clinics around the US began a Phase 3 trial of the vaccine candidate, with the aim of enrolling 30,000 people to test for safety and effectiveness.
In the latest study, three groups of eight rhesus macaques received two injections of 10 or 100 microgrammes (µg) of mRNA-1273 or a placebo. Injections were spaced 28 days apart.