Under the agreement, the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, would fund development of the vaccine mRNA-1273 up through approval by the U.S. regulators, as well as efforts to scale up manufacturing, Moderna said in a press release.
Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine is one of the first to begin human trials. There are 70 vaccines in some stage of development now, the
Vaccines give broad parts of the population some level of immunity to a disease, and are considered crucial to ending the pandemic by creating widespread immunity to the virus. They take longer to develop, in part because they must be proven to be extremely safe since they’re given to well people.
Shares of the company were up 14% to $46.38 at 10:31 a.m. The earlier 21% gain was the company’s biggest intraday rise since March 17, the day after it was
The vaccine uses a novel RNA technology to stimulate the immune system. A small human safety study has been underway since March. The first 45 patients have enrolled and the trial was recently expanded to add additional groups of older patients, Moderna said.
The company plans to hire as many as 150 new employees in the U.S. this year and to expand its manufacturing capacity to three shifts every day of the week, up from two shifts a day five days a week.
“This grant allows us to go as fast as we can,” said
He said the company had not gotten any results yet from the ongoing safety trial.
The company said that by investing in its manufacturing to enable large-scale production for pandemic response, its believes it would be able to supply millions of doses per month in 2020 and, with further investments, tens of millions per month in 2021, if the vaccine is successful.
To contact the reporter on this story:
To contact the editor responsible for this story:
© 2020 Bloomberg L.P. All rights reserved. Used with permission.