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Moderna reports positive early vaccine trial results

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Biotechnology company Moderna announced that its early-stage human trial for a coronavirus vaccine produced COVID-19 antibodies in all trail participants. Yahoo Finance's Anjalee Khemlani joins The First Trade to discuss.

Video Transcript

ALEXIS CHRISTOFOROUS: Leading this advance this morning and all this positive energy is the biotech company Moderna. The company reporting positive phase 1 results for a potential coronavirus vaccine. A study said it was, quote, generally safe and well tolerated in the early stage.

And get a load of the stock here in the premarket, up better than 30% right now. And of course this news cannot come fast enough as the number of coronavirus cases worldwide continues to rise. Just concentrating here in the US, we are just shy of hitting 1.49 million cases that have resulted in just under 90,000 deaths.

Joining us now for more is Anjalee Khemlani. Anjalee, I know that you just came off a call with Moderna. What are they saying about this vaccine and a possible timeline?

ANJALEE KHEMLANI: Right. So the timeline is still about the same as it has been before in terms of actually reaching market. They're talking about reaching a phase 2 of the trial. They just completed their phase 1. And the good news that is coming right now that is affecting markets is the results of that phase 1 of that trial.

We had heard that they had completed it. And that the FDA had approved phase 2. But we're hearing today that that's approved for July. And that, as you mentioned, the vaccine has proved to be effective. They've noticed that it's also effective in lower doses. And that's good news, because it means that they can produce more of the vaccine for-- and, you know, dose more people.

One of the concerns that still remains though is how long the outbreak lasts for, and whether or not they'll have enough cases around to conduct a larger phase 3 of the trial. So that's something that they're keeping an eye on and hoping that they don't run into that obstacle down the line Alexis.

ALEXIS CHRISTOFOROUS: And Anjalee, I know the World Health Organization is holding its annual convention today for the first time ever online. They're going to be teleconferencing. This is unprecedented for the WHO, given the coronavirus pandemic. And at that meeting, which kicks off today, they're going to be investigating China as it relates to this pandemic. What more can you tell us?

ANJALEE KHEMLANI: Right. That is what we're waiting to hear right now. We know that on the other side China has said-- the president has said that they're looking to sort of create that global message of working together and working towards a vaccine together. And there are also going to be questions about whether or not there's going to be a global vaccine timeline presented or implemented in any way.

One of the things on the side related is the discussion about Taiwan attending and being a part of the conversation. So a lot of moving parts there. We're waiting to see and, as you mentioned, unprecedented, not just because of the pandemic moving it online but also because this is one of those times where really all the countries do in fact meet to talk to each other and some concerns about that as well.

ALEXIS CHRISTOFOROUS: All right. Anjalee Khemlani thanks for the update this morning.