COVID: Novarax Vaccine shows potential to prevent coronavirus

Novavax has announced on Tuesday, that its potential vaccine to prevent Covid-19 is showing promising results in an early-stage clinical trial.

The announcement comes less than two weeks after drug companies Pfizer and Moderna both announced they began their late-stage trials for potential coronavirus vaccines.

Novavax is among several companies racing to develop a vaccine to fight the virus, which has infected more than 18 million people worldwide and killed at least 694,715 as of Tuesday, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

There are more than 150 vaccines under development globally, according to the World Health Organization, with at least 25 already in human trials.

The phase one trial included 131 healthy participants between the ages of 18 and 59 at two sites in Australia. Novavax said, “106 participants received one of four dose levels of the potential vaccine, named NVX-CoV2373, with or without an adjuvant, which is an ingredient designed to enhance the immune response.”

However, the biotech company’s stock is falling on concerns about its safety. Scientists expect that antibodies provide some degree of protection against getting Covid-19, but they can’t say that definitively yet since the virus was first discovered just seven months ago.

While Novavax’s data appears promising, scientists warn that questions remain about how the human body responds once it’s been infected with the virus. The answers, they say, may have important implications for vaccine development, including how quickly it can be deployed to the public.