Final stage testing for COVID-19 vaccine begins in the US

Final stage testing for COVID-19 vaccine begins in the US

30,000 volunteers are participating in the testing of the vaccine developed by NIH and Moderna  

National Institutes of Health and Moderna Inc. developed coronavirus vaccine in its final phase of testing injected to some of the 30,000 volunteers. The subjects are either injected with the real vaccine or dummy vaccine without knowing about it. The results will take months to come in before the effectiveness of the vaccine is known. The United States has the most COVID-19 cases in the world with more than 4.4 million testing positive and over 150,000 succumbing to the virus.

NIH Director Francis Collins called the development a significant milestone after the first vaccine was administered. “Yes, we’re going fast, but no, we are not going to compromise” on proving whether the vaccine is safe and effective.

Stephane Bancel, CEO of Massachusetts-based Moderna said that the company is focused on the speed of the vaccine development since numbers are going up by the day. “We are focusing on speed because everyday matters,” Bancel said.

More Testing Underway

Another big pharmaceutical company, Pfizer Inc., announced that it began its own study of its vaccine candidate in the U.S. and elsewhere. This study also plans to test it on 30,000 people. Dr. Frank Eder of Meridian Clinical Research, the company that runs the Binghamton trial site feels the testing will help in getting things back to normal, rather than waiting it out.

“We’ve been sitting on the sidelines passively attempting to wear our masks and social distance and not go out when it’s not necessary. This is the first step of becoming active against this,” said Eder of. “There’s really no other way to get past this.”

A number of countries are involved in the Vaccine development for the novel coronavirus. It will surely take some time before a reliable vaccine will be available. Until that is done, these tests are highly significant.

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