Moderna says COVID-flu vaccine provides strong immune response in late-stage trial - National |

Modena The company said on Monday that its combination vaccine can also prevent Coronavirus disease In late-stage trials, the flu vaccine produced a stronger immune response in adults 50 and older than the virus shot alone.

The company said that in the study, the combination using messenger RNA technology produced more antibodies than the traditional flu vaccines currently on the market and Moderna's Spikevax mRNA COVID vaccine.

The company said the vaccine, called mRNA-1083, triggered a higher immune response against two influenza A strains and one influenza B strain in older adults compared with widely used flu vaccines from GlaxoSmithKline and Sanofi.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration in March recommended that drugmakers target these three strains (H1N1, H3N2 and B/Victoria) when developing seasonal flu vaccines for 2024.

The latest data came from two arms of a large study involving about 8,000 people – one arm testing the combo vaccine against GlaxoSmithKline's Fluarix in adults aged 50 to 64, and the other arm testing the combo against Sanofi's Fluzone HD, a high-dose vaccine for older adults, in people aged 65 and older.

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Moderna President Stephen Hoge said the drugmaker hopes to have a combination vaccine available for the fall respiratory illness season in 2025. “If it's not 2025, it's 2026,” he said.

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The Cambridge, Massachusetts-based company has been relying on the new vaccine to make up for a sharp drop in demand and sales for its COVID vaccine.

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If approved, the combination vaccine would become Moderna's third product to market, following the FDA approval of its respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) vaccine last month.

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Moderna also said the latest study found the combination vaccine to be safe and tolerable, with rates of adverse side effects similar to other vaccines used in trials.

Moderna said the most common side effects were pain at the injection site, fatigue, muscle aches and headache.

The company said it expects to present full results from the study at an upcoming medical meeting.

(Reporting by Patrick Wingrove; Editing by Bill Berkrot)

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