Indian government is in dialogue with US biotech giant Moderna, regarding initial successful development of its COVID-19 vaccine candidate, which the drugmaker on Monday announced had achieved 94.5 per cent efficacy in phase 3 trials. “The government is in dialogue with both domestic and international vaccine manufacturers.

Not only with Moderna–the government is also in communication with Pfizer, Serum Institute, Bharat Biotech and Zydus Cadila for their COVID-19 vaccine candidate in terms of safety, immunogenicity and efficacy,” a senior government official said: The pharma giant Moderna announced on Monday that its coronavirus vaccine was 94.5 per cent effective, based on early results from its large ongoing study.

“The NIH-appointed Data Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB) for the Phase 3 study of mRNA-1273, its vaccine candidate against COVID-19, has informed Moderna that the trial has met the statistical criteria pre-specified in the study protocol for efficacy, with a vaccine efficacy of 94.5 per cent,” Moderna said in a statement.

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This announcement follows that by US giant Pfizer and Germany’s BioNTech last week that their vaccine was found to be more than 90 per cent effective. The World Health Organization (WHO) is encouraged to hear the announcement of the US biotech firm, Moderna, about the efficacy results of its coronavirus vaccine during its phase three clinical trials, its press office said on Monday.

“It is encouraging to hear the announcement from Moderna on the efficacy results of their vaccine candidate and the information about the stability at standard refrigeration temperatures. We also welcome the announcement from Biological E that Phase I/II clinical trials of its vaccine candidate have begun. Vaccine delivery characteristics are an important part of reaching more people with these products,” the statement said.

According to the press office, such innovative and scientific success is vital for the effective fight against the pandemic. “It is great news that multiple vaccines are nearing the final stages of testing. The world will need multiple vaccines to meet all the needs,” the organization added.

Dozens of pharmaceutical companies across the world are currently engaged in different phases of trials of vaccines against the COVID-19. Last week, German biotechnology firm BioNTech and US pharmaceutical company Pfizer reported a successful third phase of clinical trials of their COVID-19 vaccine, claiming it to be 90 per cent effective.

Sputnik V was the pioneer vaccine for the entire world — Russia officially registered it on August 11. The vaccine was developed by Gamaleya Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology and is currently completing phase three clinical trials.

Over 180 countries are currently involved in the WHO-led “COVAX facility” whose aim is to bring together and make equitably accessible all global developments in the diagnostics, treatment and vaccines against the COVID-19.

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