Shares of Moderna surged as much as 11% in premarket trading Monday after the company announced a new round of funding and the start of the Phase 3 trial for its coronavirus vaccine candidate.
On Sunday, Moderna announced an additional round of $472 million in funding to “support late stage clinical development including the expanded Phase 3 study of the Company’s mRNA vaccine candidate (mRNA-1273) against COVID-19,” according to a statement.
The extra funding came from the biotech firm’s contract with the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, which in April had awarded the company $483 million when the experimental vaccine was in early stage trials. The total value of the award is now about $955 million.
Then, on Monday, Moderna announced that the Phase 3 trial of its experimental vaccine against the coronavirus has started dosing participants. Moderna is working closely with BARDA and the National Institutes of Health to conduct the Phase 3 study under Operation Warp Speed.
“We look forward to this trial demonstrating the potential of our vaccine to prevent COVID-19, so that we can defeat this pandemic,” Moderna CEO Stephane Bancel said in a statement.
The company remains on track to deliver approximately 500 million doses of its COVID-19 vaccine per year beginning in 2021.