To combat COVID-19, Moderna launched a Phase 1 study consisting of 45 participants in an effort to create a vaccine on an expedited timeline. March 16th was the start of the Phase 1 testing. The initial group of 45 people were divided into groups of 15 individuals. Each grouping received 2 doses of treatment, but each group received a different dosage of the proposed vaccine (25, 100, or 250 microgram dosages). The subjects who received both doses, showed higher levels of virus-defeating antibodies when compared to individuals who had recovered from the coronavirus. The majority of participants who received both dosages did report adverse reactions, as to be expected during the trials.
Given the results of Phase 1 trials by Moderna, Phase 2 trials are expected to begin any day now. Phase 2 will be expanded to 600 participants and will be conducted in much of the same way that Phase 1 was. Moderna President Steven Hoge told ‘CBS This Morning’ that “Our goal is to have a vaccine available for broad distribution by year-end or early next year.” This is key to keep in the forefront of everyone’s mind, as it provides some tangible data towards the possibility of returning to “normalcy” in just a few months. This news is welcomes since recently many states, particularly in the south and southwest have seen an increase in COVID-19 cases, likely due to the relaxed social distancing practices. If the Moderna vaccine continues to have success in its trials and we maintain social distance, we could increase the chances of getting back to “normalcy” much quicker.
photo compliments of Getty Images