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March 17, 2021

Coronavirus company news summary – Moderna begins trial of Covid-19 vaccine in children under 12 – Sweden joins list of countries pausing AZ vaccine rollout amid blood clotting concerns

By Chris Lo

Moderna has started dosing the first participants in a Phase II/III clinical trial called the KidCOVE study, of mRNA-1273, the company’s Covid-19 vaccine. The KidCOVE study is being conducted in children aged from six months to 12 years, and is being conducted in collaboration with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

Sweden’s health agency has paused the use of AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine to fight the disease as a precautionary measure as several countries such as France, Italy, and Germany have done the same due to possible serious side effects. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) is currently investigating any link between the vaccine and blood clots, after reported deaths in the vaccinated population.

Indian pharmaceutical company Gland Pharma has struck a deal with the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) to produce up to 252 million doses of the Sputnik V Covid-19 vaccine. The vaccine’s production is expected to begin in the third quarter of 2021, with deliveries expected to start in the last quarter. The company did not disclose which countries would be receiving the deliveries. Sputnik V was developed by the Gamaleya Research Institute in Moscow and has been approved in 22 countries.

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