Moderna Starts COVID Vaccine Trial in Children, Stock Soars

Mandatory Credit: Photo by Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/Shutterstock (11554233a)In this photo illustration, vials seen displayed in front of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of the United States and Moderna biotechnology company's logos.
Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/Shutterstock / Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/Shutterstock

Moderna (NASDAQ: MRNA) announced today that the first children have been vaccinated in its Phase 2/3 pediatric COVID-19 vaccine trial, and as of Tuesday morning, the company’s stock was up 6.86% to $153.44.

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The study is expected to enroll 6,750 healthy pediatric participants ages 6 months to 12 years, in the U.S. and Canada, the company said in a statement.

The study, called KidCOVE, is being conducted in collaboration with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, part of the National Institutes of Health, and the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, which is part of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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“We are pleased to begin this Phase 2/3 study of mRNA-1273 in healthy children in the U.S. and Canada and we thank NIAID and BARDA for their collaboration,” Stéphane Bancel, CEO of Moderna, said in the statement. “It is humbling to know that 53 million doses have been administered to people in the U.S. We are encouraged by the primary analysis of the Phase 3 COVE study of mRNA-1273 in adults ages 18 and above and this pediatric study will help us assess the potential safety and immunogenicity of our COVID-19 vaccine candidate in this important younger age population.”

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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued an emergency use authorization for Moderna on Dec. 18, 2020, which allowed the vaccine to be distributed in the U.S. for use in individuals 18 years of age and older, according to the FDA. The vaccine has a 94.1% efficacy rate, according to the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention.

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About the Author

Yaël Bizouati-Kennedy is a former full-time financial journalist and has written for several publications, including Dow Jones, The Financial Times Group, Bloomberg and Business Insider. She also worked as a vice president/senior content writer for major NYC-based financial companies, including New York Life and MSCI. Yaël is now freelancing and most recently, she co-authored  the book “Blockchain for Medical Research: Accelerating Trust in Healthcare,” with Dr. Sean Manion. (CRC Press, April 2020) She holds two master’s degrees, including one in Journalism from New York University and one in Russian Studies from Université Toulouse-Jean Jaurès, France.

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