According to Moderna officials in a recent press conference arranged by J.P Morgan Healthcare, the vaccine manufacturer has claimed that once a patient will get inoculated with their vaccine then the immunity developed by the inoculation will last for a year. This also means that the patient once inoculated with vaccine will be immune from contracting Covid-19 for up to a year at minimum.
The claim was made by the CEO of Moderna, Mr. Stephance Bancel whereby he had assured that the company was doing well to achieve the target of manufacturing and delivering more than 500 million doses of their vaccine in the year 2021.
It's been 9 months since I got my first dose of the Moderna vaccine (Phase 1).
Had brief flu-like side effects. Zero issues since then 👍🏻
My antibody levels, T cells and overall health are all still being monitored. How long will immunity last? Wish I knew! pic.twitter.com/LoXk1GVRcH
— Ian Haydon (@ichaydon) January 8, 2021
This claim from Moderna is not backed by any evidence or test results. Moderna had earlier conducted clinical trials which had shown that their vaccine was very effective against Covid-19 in test individuals. However, these tests were not in any way an indication of how long this immunity will last in the individuals who were inoculated by the vaccine.
Health experts believe that the rate at which Covid-19 infections are spreading, it is highly likely that regular vaccinations or booster shots will be required in order to successfully evade an infection. This also means that as the virus is evolving, soon it will not respond to the current vaccine and then new vaccine will have to be developed to curb the infections from new strain.
In response, Moderna has stated that their vaccine was developed on the latest mRNA techniques which are quickly adaptable to new strains such as the ones being detected in U.K. and South Africa and their current vaccine will provide sufficient immunity to the individuals against the new strains as well.
— John Nosta (@JohnNosta) January 12, 2021
CEO of Moderna also took this opportunity at J.P Morgan Healthcare Conference to point-out the fact that even if the virus mutates to a strain which does not respond to their current vaccine then owing to the highly adaptable manufacturing platform they will develop the new vaccine within weeks.
He also pointed out that Moderna has expanded its vaccine production capabilities and at the current rate the company is set to achieve its ambitious goal of manufacturing and delivering up to 1 billion doses in the year 2021.
Experts are hinting that although Moderna’s vaccine is their first product in the market but they are set to make more than US$ 10 billion in sales from their only product as they have booked multiple orders of the vaccine from many countries across the globe.
On account of how long a vaccine can provide immunity, scientists and experts have mixed opinion. Some vaccine shots are for lifetime while others require a booster shot every year or after a few years depending upon the nature of the disease and the pathogen which causes it.
The Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna mRNA vaccines have set a high bar for efficacy and safety, and appear poised to ramp up supply and dominate the U.S. market throughout the first half of the year, supporting a foundation for herd immunity in the U.S. by midyear 2021. pic.twitter.com/rGOFvBvHhY
— Morningstar Research (@MstarResearch) January 11, 2021
The clinical trials already conducted by the vaccine manufacturers fail to answer the question of how long they will remain effective. This answer will only be known with time when these vaccines are put to test worldwide. But on the bright side, almost all the vaccines are being made using the mRNA technology which can be easily used to make a vaccine for a certain strain within weeks.