Moderna's Covid-19 vaccine shows promise against Delta variant in lab study

CAMBRIDGE, MASSACHUSETTS (Reuters) – Moderna Inc’s Covid-19 vaccine produced neutralising antibodies against emerging variants, including the Delta variant first identified in India, in a lab study the drugmaker said on Tuesday (June 29).

The study was conducted on blood serum from eight participants obtained one week after they received the second dose of the vaccine in an early-stage trial.

Vaccination produced antibodies against all variants, including additional versions of the Beta variant first identified in South Africa and three lineage variants first identified in India, including the Kappa and the Delta variants.

The analysis, however, showed a modest reduction in neutralising antibodies against a few of the newer variants, including Delta, Kappa and Gamma.

“These new data are encouraging and reinforce our belief that the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine should remain protective against newly detected variants,” Chief Executive Stephane Bancel said.

Earlier in the day, India granted permission to drugmaker Cipla to import Moderna’s vaccine to the country for restricted use.

“I am pleased to inform that an application received from Moderna through an Indian partner of theirs, Cipla, has been granted EUA (Emergency Use Authorisation),” a member of advisory body NITI Aayog, Vinod K. Paul, said at a health ministry briefing.

“Our efforts to invite and to have other internationally developed vaccines, specifically Pfizer and J&J (Johnson & Johnson), also continue.”

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