How will the Moderna vaccine affect the battle against Corona?


The American pharmaceutical company, Moderna, announced today (Monday) that its experimental vaccine against the emerging corona virus has shown its effectiveness by 94.5 percent, about a week after the companies “Pfizer” and “Biontech” announced that the vaccine they are developing is “90 percent effective.” percent”.

In this context, the British newspaper, The Guardian, took a look at all the available data regarding the “Moderna” vaccine and how it affects the battle against the Corona virus.

What happened in detail?

The first results of the clinical trials of the third phase of the Corona vaccine developed by Moderna were released. This phase included more than 30 thousand participants in the United States, who were divided into two groups, one group was given two doses of the vaccine, and the other group was given a placebo.

The results are very promising. The researchers reported that the vaccine has a effectiveness of 94.5%.

This means that 90 participants from the group of people who received the placebo drug developed “Covid-19”, compared to only 5 in the group that received the vaccine.

No person who received the vaccine developed serious symptoms of “Corona”, while 11 people from the group of people who received a placebo drug suffered from these symptoms.

In addition, the researchers say, the vaccine did not raise any major safety concerns, as the main side effects included some pain at the injection site upon receiving the first dose, and headache, fatigue and muscle pain after the second, stressing that these effects lasted for a very short time.

How does this vaccine work?

Like the “Pfizer” and “Biontech” vaccine, the “Moderna” vaccine depends on the introduction of a genetic material, known as mRNA, into the human body, which orders the body’s cells to build the “spike” protein, which is a protein on the outside of “Corona” that allows the virus To enter human cells.

This process aims to build an immune response in the body against the Corona virus, as the body will be able to easily recognize the protein and fight it.

Contrary to claims by some anti-vaccination campaigners, mRNA cannot alter a body’s genes.

How diverse are participants in vaccine trials?

The Moderna team emphasized that the participants were of different ages and races. This is very important; Because many studies have found that people who are older or of certain races are more likely to develop the disease.

However, the new results have not been peer-reviewed and the results are not yet complete.

How exciting and important will these results be?

The ads “Pfizer” and “Moderna” are gaining great importance at the present time; Because they will raise global hopes to develop vaccines as soon as possible and address the outbreak of the virus, but also because they will support other vaccine trials based on mRNA or similar materials and strategies.

For example, a vaccine developed by the University of Oxford in Britain in cooperation with the company «AstraZeneca» uses a sample of the virus that causes colds that infects chimpanzees. As with mRNA, this virus is modified so that it cannot cause infection, but instead creates human immunity against respiratory viruses, including Corona.

How is the Moderna vaccine different from the Pfizer vaccine?

While both are based on the same approach, there are some important differences.

In particular, the Pfizer vaccine must be stored at 80 degrees below zero, which is a challenge that must be overcome if the vaccine is widely available, while the Moderna vaccine can be stored for 30 days at a temperature between 2 degrees Celsius. And 8 degrees Celsius. This means that it may be stored in a regular refrigerator. Which may facilitate access to people in different countries of the world.

In the event that Moderna vaccine needs to be stored for a longer period, the team says it can last for six months at -20 ° C.

What will happen next?

Moderna says it plans to apply for an emergency use permit from the US Food and Drug Administration in the coming weeks, adding that it expects by the end of the year to have 20 million doses of the vaccine ready for shipment in the United States.

If the authority approves the vaccine, the speed of its development will constitute a scientific achievement. It would have taken less than a year for the virus to emerge in China.

For its part, the European Commission is currently negotiating with the company “Moderna” to obtain 160 million doses of the vaccine.

There are questions that the developers of the Moderna vaccine have not answered, the most important of which is the effectiveness of the vaccination dose.

There is also a very important matter that has not yet been clarified, which is whether the vaccine prevents people from contracting the Coronavirus and transmitting it, or that people may carry it and pass it on to others without becoming infected.


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