(Natural News) The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continues to ravage countries across the world, with desperate people counting on a vaccine that can help protect them from this infectious disease. And yet despite warnings from health experts about potential negative side effects, Moderna Inc. has already begun testing its experimental coronavirus vaccine on kids aged 12 to 17.
Moderna's vaccine to be completed by 2022
According to a press release from the biotechnology company, the phase II/III trial will involve an estimated 3,000 volunteers aged 12 to 17.
The researchers will give half of the volunteers two shots of Moderna's immunization or mRNA-1273 four weeks apart. Meanwhile, the rest of the participants will receive saltwater placebos.
The scientists claim that they will monitor the safety and efficacy of the vaccine in children. All volunteers will be followed for 12 months after the second inoculation.
In a statement, Moderna CEO Stephane Bancel announced that the company is "pleased to begin this Phase 2/3 study of mRNA-1273 in healthy adolescents in the US." Bancel added that the company aims to generate data by spring in 2021 that will "support the use of mRNA-1273 in adolescents in advance of the 2021 school year."
Bancel concluded that Moderna Inc. wants to produce a "safe vaccine" that can help protect adolescents and ensure that they can soon "return to school in a normal setting."
Clinicaltrials.gov, a registry of clinical trials run by the US National Library of Medicine, revealed that the Moderna Inc. study is slated to be completed by June 2022. The company's vaccine will also be used at testing locations in Idaho, Minnesota, New York, Oklahoma, Texas and Utah.