August 13, 2020
The Lupus Research Alliance (LRA) is encouraged by a promising animal study in the New England Journal of Medicine co-authored by Robert Seder, MD, Chief of the Cellular Immunology Section in the Vaccine Research Center at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and member of the LRA Board of Directors, showing that the mRNA-1273 vaccine rapidly controlled the SARS COV-2 coronavirus and induced a strong response by the immune system.[i]
The mRNA-1273 vaccine, was co-developed by a team of scientists at the NIH’s NIAID Vaccine Research Center and its manufacturer Moderna, Inc. The potential vaccine is designed to induce antibodies to target or neutralize the ability of a portion of the protein protruding from the coronavirus to bind to and enter human cells.
Interim results of a Phase I study previously published in the NEJM showed similar results in healthy adults.[ii] The mRNA-1273 vaccine produced more antibodies to neutralize the virus than that seen in serum obtained from blood samples of people who had recovered from COVID-19 disease. Larger clinical trials of mRNA-1273 are also underway to test if this potential vaccine can protect adults from the coronavirus.[iii]
[i] Evaluation of the mRNA-1273 Vaccine against SARS-CoV-2 in Nonhuman Primates. N Engl J Med. 2020 Jul 28. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa2024671. Online ahead of print. Available at: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32722908/
[iii]Phase 3 clinical trial of investigational vaccine for COVID-19 begins. Available at: https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/phase-3-clinical-trial-investigational-vaccine-covid-19-begins