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Novavax develops Covid vaccine

Novavax, a company that has been working on developing vaccines for over thirty years, has been working on a Covid vaccine partly funded by the U.S. government. Novavax has not yet brought a vaccine to market, but has had positive studies for the Covid vaccine.

The main difference between Novavax’s vaccine and the ones widely administered in the U.S. is that theirs is made with lab-grown copes of the spike protein that the body is trained to recognize. Some of that vaccines currently used include genetic instructions for the body to make the spike protein on its own.

The Novavax vaccine is designed to be easily transported and stored in refrigerators. With many countries around the world having such low vaccination rates, the vaccine is expected to play a very important role in increasing those numbers.

More than half the U.S. population has received at least one dose of the vaccine, while less than 1% of people in the developing world have had one shot.

The study for Novavax vaccine included 30,000 individuals ages 18 and up in the U.S. and Mexico. Two thirds received two doses of the vaccine three weeks apart while one third received a placebo. In total there were 77 cases of Covid among the participants. 14 were in the group that received the vaccine and the rest were in the group that received the placebo. 14 in the placebo group had moderate or severe Covid while none in the vaccinated group had severe symptoms.

The vaccine has been effective against many variants including the dominant one in the U.S.

Side effects reported included pain or swelling at the injection site and there were no reports of unusual blood clots or heart problems.

While the company faced manufacturing shortages, they are expected to produce 100 million doses by September and 150 million by December.

The company has committed to supplying 1.1 billion doses to developing countries.

The studies show the vaccine is about 90% effective and preliminary data shows it is safe.

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