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Moderna’s CEO tells FT that the coronavirus vaccine will not be ready until election day

In this photo file, taken on August 13, the Moderna protocol files for COVID-19 vaccinations are stored at the American Research Centers in Hollywood, Florida.

AFP / Getty images

The potential coronavirus vaccine of Moderna Inc. will not be ready until the US presidential election, the biotech company’s chief executive told the Financial Times on Wednesday.

CEO Stefan Bansel told FT in an interview that Moderna MRNA,
+ 0.32%
– Leading participant in the COVID-19 vaccine competition – will not request permission for emergency use from the US Food and Drug Administration until November 25 at the earliest and does not expect approval for distribution of the vaccine to the general public by spring 2021

“I think it’s too late [first quarter], early [second quarter] approval is a reasonable schedule based on what we know from our vaccine, “Bancel told the FT.

President Donald Trump is pushing for a vaccine until election day, worrying some experts who fear a rapid and inadequate testing process.

FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn has promised that the approval process will be based on science, not politics. “The FDA will not allow any pressure to change that,” Hahn said recently. “I will put the interests of the American people above all else.”

Despite Trump’s claims that the vaccine could be ready in weeks, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Robert Redfield told Congress earlier this month that widespread vaccinations are not expected until next year.

Based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Moderna has one of seven coronavius ​​vaccine candidates being tested in the United States and one of four that have been tested at a late stage.

In August, Moderna said the U.S. government had agreed to buy 100 million doses from its vaccine candidate, with the option to buy another 400 million doses, for a total of $ 2.48 billion.

Shares of Moderna rose more than 261% year-over-year compared to the S&P 500’s SPX,
+ 0.82%
4% profit this year.

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