(Reuters) – Drug developer Moderna Inc (MRNA.O) on Friday said it has so far enrolled 13,194 participants in the ongoing late-stage 30,000-volunteer U.S. trial testing its COVID-19 vaccine candidate.
In a tweet, the company also said that 18% of the participants currently enrolled are Black, Latino, American Indian or Alaska Native, groups among the hardest hit by the coronavirus virus pandemic.
Moderna began the study of its vaccine candidate, mRNA-1273, in July and expects to complete enrollment in September. The 30,000 subject U.S. trial is among the first late-stage studies supported by the Trump administration’s effort to speed development of measures against the novel coronavirus, adding to hope that an effective vaccine will help end the pandemic.
Last week, the company entered a supply agreement with the U.S. government to provide 100 million doses of its potential COVID-19 vaccine for around $1.5 billion.
Moderna, which has never brought a vaccine to market, had earlier received nearly $1 billion from the U.S. government, which is helping bankroll several vaccine candidates under its Operation Warp Speed program.