Following the surprise announcement by Pfizer last week of clinical trial results showing 90% efficacy for its vaccine against Covid-19, another US company, Moderna, has now published similar interim results for the vaccine that is has produced using the same technology.
The results are from 30,000 volunteers. 95 of them became ill with the coronavirus, but when the envelopes were opened to find out how many of them were from the trial group and how many from the control group, it turned out that 90 received the dummy vaccination, and only five received the real vaccine, indicating that he vaccine is highly effective at preventing the disease.
The fact that the trials of both Pfizer and Moderna were successful reduces the chances of statistical error. Like Pfizer, Moderna too will have to wait a few weeks for the safety results of all the volunteers in order to apply to the US Food and Drug Administration for approval.
Israel has agreements with both companies, which means that the chances of Israel being able to immunize a substantial proportion of its population over the next year have risen substantially, assuming that there are no surprises in the full trial results or in in the safety results, or breakdowns in production or transport.
Moderna has started setting up its production and transport system, and although it is less experienced than Pfizer in those areas, it has an advantage in that its vaccine requires less deep refrigeration during transportation than that of Pfizer.
Moderna's share price is up by more than 14% in before hours trading in New York.
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on November 16, 2020
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