Moderna kickstarts Phase 1/2 study for influenza vaccine candidate

Both mRNA-1020 and mRNA-1030 target hemagglutinin and neuraminidase antigens, two major influenza surface glycoproteins that are essential across the viral life cycle

Biovoice News vaccine
New Delhi: Moderna recently announced that the first participants have been dosed in the Phase 1/2 study of the company’s seasonal influenza vaccine candidates, mRNA-1020 and mRNA-1030. This Phase 1/2 randomized, observer-blind, dose-ranging study will evaluate the safety, reactogenicity and immunogenicity of a single dose of mRNA-1020 or mRNA-1030 in healthy adults 18 years and older in the U.S.
The mRNA-1020 and mRNA-1030 candidates each include eight mRNAs, targeting both hemagglutinin and neuraminidase at different doses and ratios. Similar to Moderna’s influenza vaccine candidate mRNA-1010, mRNA-1020 and mRNA-1030 will target the strains recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) for the prevention of influenza, including seasonal influenza A/H1N1, A/H3N2 and influenza B/Yamagata and B/Victoria.
The company intends to enrol approximately 560 participants in the study.
“We are pleased to apply Moderna’s mRNA platform to address the longstanding design and manufacturing challenges associated with developing seasonal influenza vaccines. We believe that by targeting both hemagglutinin and neuraminidase, we can achieve broader immunity and higher vaccine efficacy against circulating influenza strains than traditional influenza vaccines. Moreover, we expect that our platform’s flexibility in targeting multiple strains coupled with our ability to manufacture quickly will facilitate production of a vaccine that matches the predominant circulating influenza strain,” said Stéphane Bancel, Chief Executive Officer of Moderna.
Moderna is pursuing an iterative approach to influenza vaccine development, with increasing levels of enhancements aimed at improving immune responses and increasing immunologic breadth. Though currently licensed influenza vaccines target predominantly the viral HA, in the mRNA-1020/1030 trial, Moderna adds neuraminidase antigens in order to target both major glycoproteins with the aim of promoting a broad and robust antibody response.