Moderna Defends Against Myocarditis Fears in Conference Call
Faced with defending its COVID-19 vaccine in the face of troubling side effects, Moderna held a conference call late last week to discuss the risk of heart inflammation in young people.
The company’s Chief Medical Officer Paul Burton said during the call that Moderna’s messenger RNA (mRNA)-based Spikevax does appear linked to an increased chance of the inflammatory heart condition myocarditis in young men.
Still, the company maintains that the shot’s upsides continue to outweigh the rare risk of myocarditis, said Burton.
Meanwhile, the FDA has said it needs more time to review Moderna’s application for Emergency Use Authorization of the vaccine in kids 12 to 17 years old so the agency can look more closely at the risk of myocarditis. The FDA has said this might take until sometime in January.
Moderna, meanwhile, is facing a possible legal battle with the National Institutes of Health over the company’s vaccine’s patent rights. (DID, Nov. 11).
In other bad news for the company, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark recently stopped use of Spikevax in young people because of the risk of heart inflammation. Also, Germany and France have said they prefer Pfizer/BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine over Moderna’s for adolescents (DID, Oct. 7). — Suz Redfearn