One of the vaccine producers Moderna Inc on Saturday said that its COVID-19 shot was about 93% effective through six months after the second dose, showing hardly any change from the 94% efficacy reported in its original clinical trial. However, the vaccine producer said it still expects booster shots to be necessary ahead of the winter season as antibody levels are expected to decrease.
According to a Reuters report, Moderna and Pfizer Inc and BioNTech SE have been advocating a third shot to maintain a high level of protection against COVID-19.
Moderna CEO Stephane Bancel during a second-quarter earnings call, said that the company would not produce more than the 800 million to 1 billion doses of the vaccine that it has targeted this year. "We are now capacity constrained for 2021, and we are not taking any more orders for 2021 delivery," he said.
The Moderna data compares favorably to that released by Pfizer and BioNTech last week in which they said their vaccine's efficacy waned around 6% every two months, declining to around 84% six months after the second shot.
"Our COVID-19 vaccine is showing durable efficacy of 93% through six months, but recognize that the Delta variant is a significant new threat so we must remain vigilant," Bancel said.
Apart from this, Moderna said its studies of three different booster candidates induced robust antibody responses against variants, including the Gamma, Beta and Delta variants.
It said neutralizing antibody levels following the boost approached those observed after the second shot. Moderna has notably signed vaccine contracts worth $20 billion in sales. It has agreements for $12 billion in 2022, with options for another roughly $8 billion in sales and expects to produce between 2 billion and 3 billion doses next year.
Moderna earned $2.78 billion, or $6.46 a share, beating quarterly expectations of $5.96 a share.