These days we celebrate World Immunization Week, which is an opportunity to reflect on the importance of vaccines and immunization. Vaccines are second only to access to drinking water in terms of their impact on public health. Last year in particular, it highlighted its importance and gave us hope that vaccines can help control the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic and other deadly diseases.
Over the past year, we’ve come to realize the tremendous breakthroughs that mRNA vaccines can achieve. We have humbly provided the mRNA vaccine to help fight COVID-19.
At our state, we are committed to continuing to leverage the power of our platform to accelerate the development of our mRNA vaccine pipeline. It gives us hope that we can help conquer this pandemic, but also do more for the future.
Our team of scientists has been researching and developing mRNA since 2010. Today, we have a workforce of 1,300 people who are accelerating our efforts to stay ahead of the curve as we live in a period of time intensive innovation in vaccine technology.
We believe we have a unique opportunity to develop new vaccines against pathogens affecting populations around the world, at a radically different pace than the industry has achieved so far.
In addition to COVID-19, we are developing vaccines against other viruses that are harmful to humans and that are needed to work for. We plan to start the third phase of the clinical study of the CMV vaccine in 2021. This is especially important, because CMV is one of the main infectious causes of birth defects worldwide. We are also working on an mRNA approach to the influenza vaccine, and plan to begin studying our candidate vaccine phase 1 early this year.
We also recognize that we cannot maximize the potential of mRNA without ensuring that access to these vaccines and drugs is open to all societies. That’s why we slowed down the COVE Phase 3 study of our COVID-19 vaccine in the United States to ensure that our sample was representative of the communities most at risk and the diversity of our community.
Our work does not stop there, as we are applying what we learned from our studies on COVID-19 to studying the CMV vaccine for the next phase III. We recently shared our demographic employment goals for this study and we are committed to transparency and achieving these goals.
Our work does not stop at vaccinations. We harness the full power of mRNA that has the power to treat rare diseases, cardiovascular diseases, autoimmune diseases and many more. We are committed to applying our mRNA vaccine platform to multiple diseases, and we are confident that the milestones that Moderna will be able to achieve.
Our mission is to fulfill the promise of mRNA science to create a new generation of transformative drugs for patients. We think that’s just the beginning.
Stefan Bansel Chairman and CEO of Moderna
Stephen Hough MD, President of Moderna
Jacqueline Miller MD, Vice President and Head of the Department of Infectious Diseases, Moderna