2. mRNA-1273 COVID-19 vaccine becomes second to win EUA
Description: The vaccine uses a single mRNA sequence to encode the prefusion spike protein (S-2P) from the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Like the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, mRNA-1273 uses lipid nanoparticle technology to ferry mRNA to cells.
The Phase 3 clinical trial for the vaccine enrolled more than 30,000 U.S. participants, with 196 confirmed cases of COVID-19. The vaccine’s efficacy of 94.1% appears to be in line with the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, although the Moderna vaccine appeared appears to have a higher adverse-event rate.
Together with BNT162b2, mRNA-1273 sets a high bar for competition among COVID-19 vaccine developers but likely won’t shut out rivals in the near term.
Development status: FDA granted emergency use authorization to the vaccine on Dec. 18 following a positive assessment from the Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee. Distribution of the vaccine began on Dec. 21.