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Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine could offer protection for ‘a couple of years’, says CEO

Moderna CEO Stéphane Bancel spoke at Oddo BHF event this week

Moderna’s chief executive officer (CEO) Stéphane Bancel has said that the company’s COVID-19 vaccine could offer protection for "potentially a couple of years”.

Speaking at an Oddo BHF event this week, Bancel said: “The nightmare scenario that was described in the media in the spring with a vaccine only working a month or two is, I think, out of the window.”

He added: “The antibody decay generated by the vaccine in humans goes down very slowly [...] We believe there will be protection potentially for a couple of years.”

Although additional data is required, Bancel’s comments demonstrate a confidence in the durability of protection offered by Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine.

Due to the speed at which vaccines for COVID-19 have been developed, the question of prolonged immunity has been a hot topic while vaccines begin to gain approval in a number of countries.

On Wednesday, the European Commission granted Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine, initially called mRNA-1273, a conditional marketing authorisation to prevent the disease in people aged 18 years and older.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has also given the Moderna vaccine an emergency use authorisation for the prevention of COVID-19 in individuals aged 18 years and older.

It is the second COVID-19 vaccine to receive an EUA from the FDA following Pfizer/BioNTech’s vaccine, which is also approved in the EU under the name Comirnaty.

In a phase 3 study, Moderna’s vaccine demonstrated a 94.1% efficacy rate in reducing the number of symptomatic cases of COVID-19 in people who received the vaccine compared to participants who received a placebo.

The trial also showed a 90.9% efficacy rate in participants who were at risk of developing severe COVID-19 infection, including people with chronic lung disease, heart disease, obesity, liver disease, diabetes or HIV infection.

Meanwhile, Pfizer/BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine was found to be 95% effective, according to a final analysis of its phase 3 trial.

The observed efficacy in adults over 65 years of age came in at 94%, with the 95% efficacy rate also found to have been consistent across other markers including gender, race and ethnicity.

Article by
Lucy Parsons

8th January 2021

From: Research

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