The Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is a messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccine that was authorized for emergency use in the United States in December 2020 and is currently being distributed worldwide to help curb the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Like the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, the Moderna vaccine works by introducing a small piece of genetic material, called messenger RNA (mRNA), into cells in the body. This mRNA contains instructions for the cells to make a protein that triggers an immune response, including the production of antibodies. In the case of the Moderna vaccine, the mRNA instructs cells to make a spike protein found on the surface of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which causes COVID-19. This prompts the immune system to recognize the virus as foreign and to mount a defense against it, helping to protect against future COVID-19 infection.
The Moderna COVID-19 vaccine was developed by the biotechnology company Moderna and was authorized for emergency use by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in December 2020, following clinical trials involving more than 30,000 participants. In the trials, the vaccine was found to be 94.1% effective in preventing COVID-19, including severe disease.
The Moderna vaccine is given as a series of two doses, with the second dose administered 28 days after the first. The vaccine has been shown to be effective in people of all ages, including those over 65, who are at an increased risk of severe illness or death from COVID-19.
One of the advantages of Moderna vaccine compared to Pfizer-BioNTech is that it can be stored at normal refrigeration temperatures (36-46F or 2-8C) for up to 30 days. This makes it more practical for distribution and storage in remote areas or places with limited cold-storage capabilities.
Like all vaccines, the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine can cause side effects, although these are generally mild and short-lived. Common side effects include pain and redness at the injection site, fatigue, headache, muscle and joint pain, chills, fever, and nausea. These side effects generally go away on their own within a few days.
The Moderna COVID-19 vaccine has been authorized for emergency use in many countries, including the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and the European Union. It has been given to millions of people worldwide and has been shown to be safe and effective in preventing COVID-19.
The Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is an important tool in the fight against the ongoing pandemic, and it is part of a comprehensive strategy that includes testing, contact tracing, and other public health measures to slow the spread of the virus.
It’s important to mention that the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is not a cure for COVID-19, but it can help to prevent severe illness, hospitalization, and death from the disease. Vaccination is a crucial step in controlling the pandemic and helping to return to a sense of normalcy.