Moderna expects its COVID-19 vaccine to protect against UK coronavirus variant

December 24, 2020 - 10:27 AM
: Vials with a sticker reading, "COVID-19 / Coronavirus vaccine / Injection only" and a medical syringe are seen in front of a displayed Moderna logo in this illustration taken October 31, 2020. (Reuters/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo)

Moderna Inc said on Wednesday it expects that the immunity induced by its COVID-19 vaccine would be protective against the coronavirus variants reported in the UK.

The company said it plans to run tests to confirm the vaccine’s activity against any strain.

Moderna‘s comments came amid the British government’s plan to place huge swathes of England under its strictest COVID-19 restrictions as a highly infectious virus variant sweeps the country.

The company said it expects its vaccine, which was recently granted the U.S. emergency use authorization, to be protective against the UK variant based on data to date.

“We have already tested sera from animals and humans vaccinated with the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine against a number of previous variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that have emerged since the first outbreak of the pandemic and found our vaccine to remain equally effective,” Moderna said.

The U.S.-based company said it would be performing additional tests of the vaccine in the coming weeks to confirm its expectation. —Reporting by Manojna Maddipatla in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel