Moderna says its COVID-19 vaccine can protect against UK, South African variants
FILE - In this July 27, 2020, file photo, nurse Kathe Olmstead prepares a shot that is part of a possible COVID-19 vaccine, developed by the National Institutes of Health and Moderna Inc., in Binghamton, N.Y. Moderna Inc. says it will ask U.S. and European regulators to allow emergency use of its COVID-19 vaccine as new study results confirm the shots offer strong protection. (AP Photo/Hans Pennink, File)
Manas Mishra, Reuters
Published Monday, January 25, 2021 8:51AM EST
Jan 25 (Reuters) -- Moderna Inc said on Monday its COVID-19 vaccine produced virus-neutralizing antibodies in laboratory tests against new coronavirus variants found in the UK and South Africa.
A two-dose regimen of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is expected to be protective against emerging strains detected to date, the company said.
Moderna, however, said it would test a vaccine booster against the South Africa variant in pre-clinical trials to see if that would be more effective in boosting antibodies against the variant and other future variants.
Although all viruses mutate constantly, scientists are concerned about the mutations discovered in Britain and South Africa because they are believed to be capable of altering key functions of the virus.