More About Moderna Vaccine Trial
Phase I trial mostly uneventful.
What is next ? Phase II trial
How many volunteers? 600
What does it entail? Actual efficacy of the vaccine and whether the volunteers make neutralizing antibodies. (Phase I was only 8 patients studied)
What are neutralizing antibodies? Antibodies that bind the virus in such a way that the virus can’t attach to host cells and cause disease
Is there any risks? Potentially. The dengue virus was a failure because when the vaccine was injected into animals (monkeys), it caused formation of antibodies but they were not neutralizing. In fact those antibodies were dangerous because they potentiated the dengue virus causing a more severe case of dengue. This is called antibody dependent enhancement. Fortunately none of the monkey studies in COVID-19 have shown this and doctors are cautiously optimistic
When is the trial coming? It was supposed to start July 1 but they set the date back to last week of July.
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