Moderna, Inc. expects to generate $18.4 billion from sales of its experimental mRNA-1273 COVID-19 vaccine being distributed in the U.S. under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) granted by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This will be the first time that the U.S. based pharmaceutical company will make a profit since it was established in 2010.1
Moderna Begins Trials for a Booster Shot for South African SARS-COV-2 Variant
Reports of Moderna’s profit projections comes right after the company announced that it had shipped doses of a new variant-specific COVID-19 vaccine, known as mRNA-1273.351, to the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The new vaccine is designed to provide protection against the South African coronavirus strain B.1.351.2 This clinical trial will be conducted and funded by the NIH’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NAID).3
The South African coronavirus strain vaccine is ready to be tested in a Phase 1 clinical trial and is intended to be used as a third dose booster vaccine. The company has said that its two-dose mRNA-1273 vaccine provides neutralizing activity against variant coronavirus strains that cause COVID-19, but would like to evaluate booster doses of the vaccine to increase neutralizing immunity against different virus variants.4
Moderna CEO Stephane Bancel said:
Moderna is committed to making as many updates to our vaccine as necessary until the pandemic is under control. We hope to demonstrate that booster doses, if necessary, can be done at lower dose levels, which will allow us to provide many more doses to the global community in late 2021 and 2022 if necessary.5
Moderna to Produce 700 Million Doses of Its COVID-19 Vaccine
Moderna has said that it expects to manufacture at least 700 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine this year and 1.4 billion doses in 2022. The company has a business contract with the federal government for 300 million doses and has distributed 55 million doses in the U.S.6
Currently, each vial of Moderna’s mRNA COVID-19 vaccine contains ten doses, which is enough to fully vaccinate five people; however, the company has submitted a proposal to the FDA to fill its COVID-19 vaccine vials with up to five additional doses to reduce the backlog in the manufacturing process.7 8Moderna charges $30 for the required two shots in the U.S and $36 in the European Union.9
The company is also in negotiations with the World Health Organization’s (WHO) COVAX initiative to supply doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to developing countries this year and in 2022.10
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1 Maddipatla M, Mishra M. Moderna expects $18.4 billion in COVID-19 vaccine sales in 2021. Reuters Feb. 25, 2021.
2 Moderna, Inc. Moderna Announces it has Shipped Variant-Specific Vaccine Candidate, mRNA-1273.351, to NIH for Clinical Study. Investors Modernatx Feb. 24, 2021.
5 Lovelace B. Moderna to begin clinical trials of Covid booster shots for variant from South Africa, sends to NIH for study. CNBC Feb. 24, 2021.
6 Lovelace B. Moderna expects $18.4 billion in 2021 sales from Covid vaccine, chief medical officer to depart. CNBC Feb. 25, 2021.
7 U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine.
8 Lovelace B. Moderna expects $18.4 billion in 2021 sales from Covid vaccine, chief medical officer to depart. CNBC Feb. 25, 2021.
9 Kollewe J. Moderna forecasts $18bn in sales of Covid vaccine this year. The Guardian Feb. 25, 2021.
10 Lovelace B. Moderna expects $18.4 billion in 2021 sales from Covid vaccine, chief medical officer to depart. CNBC Feb. 25, 2021.