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November 17, 2020

How storage temperature could give Moderna’s Covid vaccine the edge

By Paul Dennis

17 November

Moderna is the second company after Pfizer to show more than 90% efficacy of its coronavirus vaccine candidate in its preliminary trials.

The company claims that its vaccine has a longer shelf life when refrigerated at ‘normal’ fridge temperatures and at room temperature, making it easier to store and use, unlike the Pfizer candidate that requires refrigeration at -70 degrees Celsius for storage.

Justin Wolfers, a professor at the University of Michigan, shared an article on Moderna’s vaccine trial which showed 94.5% efficacy against the Covid-19 disease, joining Pfizer in the race to fight the virus crisis.

Wolfers tweeted that approximately 95 people had contracted the coronavirus disease in Moderna’s study, out of which five were vaccinated and 90 were administered placebo shots of saltwater.

Wolfers states that the data revealed a huge difference between the two groups, with 11 cases that were severely affected all coming from the placebo group.

Both Moderna and the front runner Pfizer have sought the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) emergency use authorisation to start vaccinating the populations.

Officials state that the two companies can produce enough vaccine for 20 million people or more in the US by December 2020. Frontline staff, emergency workers, and residents of nursing homes should be the first ones to receive vaccination, they opine.

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