Vaccines remain one of the most effective ways to prevent COVID-19 infections and serious disease. With vaccination rates around the globe still increasing, recent estimates suggest that the majority of adults could be vaccinated against COVID-19 by mid-2022.1 However, current vaccines may not optimally protect against new variants and protection from both natural and vaccine immunity may diminish over time.2
In the rapidly evolving landscape of the pandemic, and in anticipation of future possible public health needs, we have taken a forward-looking approach to our development program and adapted our plans for each of our major vaccine efforts.
We announced on September 28 that our COVID-19 recombinant vaccine candidate is progressing in a phase 3 efficacy and safety trial. In parallel, we have expanded our research program to include a study of the vaccine as a booster dose. Recently published preclinical data indicated that the vaccine candidate has the potential to strongly boost immune response following vaccination from many of the currently approved vaccines and against a broad range of variants.
We also reported positive phase 1/2 interim results for our mRNA COVID-19 vaccine candidate. No safety concern has been observed and the tolerability profile is comparable to that of other mRNA COVID-19 vaccines of this kind. Taking into account public health needs and given sufficient mRNA COVID-19 vaccines supply can be expected going forward, we have decided not to pursue the development of our COVID-19 mRNA candidate into a Phase 3 clinical study. Building on these positive results, we will focus our mRNA resources in our newly created mRNA Center of Excellence to address future pandemics and other infectious diseases and therapeutics where there is a strong unmet need.
Finally, to help support the need for immediate primary dose vaccine supplies worldwide, we are using our manufacturing capacity and expertise for the production of half a billion authorized COVID-19 vaccines.
Our Commitment to Fighting COVID-19
Throughout the ongoing pandemic, we have joined forces to fight COVID-19