FDA authorizes Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use

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China has kickstarted an effort to inoculate 50 million people against Covid-19 ahead of the Lunar New Year, using local shots that are moving closer to getting regulatory approval.

The United States on Friday authorised Moderna's Covid-19 vaccine for emergency use, paving the way for six million doses of a second vaccine to soon begin shipping across the hardest-hit country in the world.

The country also has an agreement with Moderna for enough vaccine doses to cover 25 million people.

Both vaccines come with warnings for people who have histories of allergic reactions to their ingredients. Moderna says it intends to apply for full US license in 2021. However, the Brazilian Supreme Court has ruled that the COVID-19 vaccine was obligatory but no one should be forced to take it. To try to help instil confidence, Vice-President Mike Pence received the Pfizer-BioNTech shot on live TV Friday, along with Surgeon General Jerome Adams.

The state-funded National Health Service (NHS), which is leading the UK's mass vaccination drive with the Pfizer vaccine, has drawn up plans for "large scale" vaccination sites, in football stadiums, racecourses and conference centres to start administering jabs from the first week of January. It's just the beginning of "what we hope will be a big push to get this awful virus behind us, although it will take many more months to get to all Americans", Collins said. Moderna has about 5.9 million doses ready for shipment set to begin over the weekend, according to Operation Warp Speed, the government's vaccine development program.

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They each differ in the formulation of the fatty particles used to deliver the mRNA, which allows Moderna's vaccine to be kept in long term storage at -20 degrees Celsius, unlike Pfizer's, which must be stored at -90 degrees Celsius.

"This to me is a triumph of multi-year investment in biomedical research that culminated in something that was done in record time".

The regulator is also requiring that appropriate medical treatments for immediate allergic reactions must be available when the shot is administered in case of an anaphylactic reaction. "We're hoping very much that we will be able to avoid anything like that". Other companies that have candidates in advanced stages of human trials in the country are Ahmedabad's Cadila Healthcare and Hyderabad-based Dr Reddy's Labs which is doing studies with Russia's Sputnik V. On which vaccine is likely to be more effective, the health ministry said all the vaccines that receive licence will have comparable safety and efficacy.

The committee voted 20-0 with one abstention that the benefits of the vaccine outweighed its risks in people aged 18 and older.

Macron's symptoms were said to include a fever, cough and fatigue. The adverse reaction in the person, minutes after taking the Pfizer shot, was similar to two cases reported last week in Britain. That protein is more or less identical to the one that SARS-CoV-2, the virus which causes COVID-19, uses to attach to a host's cells and replicate.

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