The company has started to develop a new drug when it was discovered that the current vaccine is less effective in the fight against the strain found in South Africa.
The laboratory tests show that Moderna vaccine against Covid-19 works against 501.V2 mutation occurred in South Africa and against B.1.1.7 mutation that was found in the UK.
However, the reaction of the neutralizing antibodies for 501.V2 was six times lower than the initial variant. It raises concerns that the immunity might weaken for such a virus, especially of old people.
Bancel said that the company prepares for the worst scenario; however, he has no doubts about the efficacy of the vaccine in the next months.
“If something should be done in summer, we will do something but we cannot be late,” he noted.
As we reported, the European Union is increasing its pressure on manufacturers of coronavirus vaccines due to delays in deliveries.
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