Moderna Inc. said its Covid-19 vaccine was 94.5% effective in a preliminary analysis of a large late-stage clinical trial, another sign that a fast-paced hunt by scientists and pharmaceutical companies is paying off with potent new tools that could help control a worsening pandemic.
The highly positive readout comes just a week after a similar shot developed by Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE was found to be more than 90% effective in an interim analysis. Both shots rely on a technology called messenger RNA that has never been used to build an approved vaccine. Soon, millions of people around the world could be spared from illness by the breakthroughs.
A preliminary analysis of data from more than 30,000 volunteers showed Moderna’s vaccine prevented virtually all symptomatic cases of Covid-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, the company said in a statement on Monday.
Only five participants who received two doses of the vaccine became sick, compared with 90 coronavirus cases in participants who received a placebo, according to a review by an independent data safety monitoring board appointed by the U.S. National Institutes of Health.
The vaccine also appeared to be effective in preventing the most serious Covid-19 infections. There were no severe cases among people who got the vaccine, compared with 11 in volunteers who received placebo shots, according to Moderna’s statement.