Moderna has become the latest company to announce success in the efficacy of its COVID-19 vaccine.
The biotech firm announced Monday that the early results of its vaccine show it is 94.5% effective in preventing the virus, and expects to have 20 million doses of the two-dose vaccine available by the end of the year and 500 million to 1 billion available in 2021.
The study has yet to be peer reviewed, is still subject to FDA approval, and it's not yet known how long the immunity lasts, but nonetheless represents another sign of hope that humanity could return to a semblance of normality later in 2021.
Moderna's study involved 30,000 adult participants, some of whom were given the vaccine and others a placebo.
Moderna found that 95 people had contracted the virus two weeks after the second dose was administered, of which 90 had received the placebo. What's more, all 11 people who had severe COVID-19 were in the placebo group.
Of those who got the virus, 12 were Hispanic or Latino, four were Black or African American, three were Asian American, and one is multiracial.
It comes a week after Pfizer announced a vaccine that has 90% efficacy, but one of the significant benefits of the Moderna vaccine is that it can be stored at up to -4F, compared to Pfizer's -94F – and can last up to 12 hours at room temperature.
Unlike Pfizer's vaccine, the development of the Moderna vaccine was part-funded by the federal Operation Warp Speed, launched by the Trump Administration for the research, manufacture, and distribute a COVID-19 vaccine as soon as possible.