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Roche Forms Partnership with Moderna to Bring Antibody Testing to COVID-19 Vaccine Trials

UTC by Benjamin Godfrey · 3 min read
Roche Forms Partnership with Moderna to Bring Antibody Testing to COVID-19 Vaccine Trials
Photo: Roche

With the antibody tests which involve a blood draw and secures the Emergency Use Authorization from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), one will be able able to ascertain his antibody levels before and after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine shots.

Roche Diagnostics, a division of Swiss multinational healthcare company, Roche Holding AG (SWX: RO) has announced a partnership with foremost COVID-19 vaccine developer Moderna Inc (NASDAQ: MRNA) to bring its antibody testing to the latter’s late-stage vaccine trials. As contained in the press release issued by the company, the test will involve Roche’s Elecsys® Anti-SARS-CoV-2 S antibody test and Moderna’s mRNA-1273 vaccine.

With the test, there will be a quantitative measurement of the SARS-CoV-2 antibodies which will help in establishing the correlation with the administered vaccines. The mRNA-1273 vaccine utilizing MRNA technology which seeks to train the body to trigger the body’s antibodies response specifically to the anti-receptor binding domain (RBD) antibodies of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein.

“Roche values the collaboration with Moderna, which has already included the successful use of our qualitative Elecsys Anti-SARS-CoV-2 test, targeting the nucleocapsid protein, in an earlier part of the studies”, said Thomas Schinecker, CEO Roche Diagnostics. “We are pleased to see that our quantitative Elecsys SARS-CoV-2 S test, which targets the spike protein, is now also being used as part of the Moderna vaccine trials, which could ultimately help to end this pandemic.”

The offering from Roche with respect to the antibody testing will help Moderna to have a qualitative review of the impact of its vaccines during the trial while helping the former firm to scale up the antibody testing technology that is not yet fully in demand.

“Measuring the quantitative levels of anti-RBD SARS-CoV-2 antibodies using Roche’s test will help Moderna to gain valuable insights into the correlation between protection from vaccination and antibody levels. This could play a role in assessing if, or when, an individual needs revaccination, or in helping to answer other clinically relevant questions,” Roche said in the official press release.

With the antibody tests which involve a blood draw and secures the Emergency Use Authorization from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), one will be able able to ascertain his antibody levels before and after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine shots.

Roche Antibody Testing to Give mRNA-1273 a Better Edge?

Of the top pharmaceutical companies particularly in the United States Operation Warp Speed, Moderna and Pfizer Inc (NYSE: PFE) stood out as they both adopted the mRNA technology in their vaccine development. As of today, the Pfizer (PFE) vaccine has secured the Emergency Use Authorization in the United Kingdom with immunization currently ongoing.

With the Moderna vaccine next in line for EUA consideration as more details from its late-stage trials are published, the Roche antibody testing may not lend more market advantage in comparison to its pairs. It may just offer a better confidence level amongst the partners hoping to get their hands on the vaccine as the test will reveal the exact potency of the vaccine shots.

Either way, Moderna will seek to gain a fairer market share as its vaccine has a relatively milder storage temperature than that of Pfizer, a factor that may attract more buyers.

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Benjamin Godfrey

Benjamin Godfrey is a blockchain enthusiast and journalists who relish writing about the real life applications of blockchain technology and innovations to drive general acceptance and worldwide integration of the emerging technology. His desires to educate people about cryptocurrencies inspires his contributions to renowned blockchain based media and sites. Benjamin Godfrey is a lover of sports and agriculture.

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