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This Time, Novavax

This post has been updated to fix the spelling of Novavax's name.

Vaccine maker Novavax has announced that it has begun a phase III trial of its SARS-CoV-2 vaccine in the UK and plans to begin a US trial next month, the New York Times reports.

An early-stage trial of Novavax's candidate vaccine, dubbed NVX-CoV2373, had promising results, finding that volunteers developed anti-spike IgG antibodies after a single dose and a neutralizing antibody response following two doses, as the Sydney Morning Herald reported last month. The firm's vaccine contains a synthetic version of the protein SARS-CoV-2 uses to enter human cells.

According to the Times, Novavax's UK trial is to enroll about 10,000 volunteers who will either receive two doses of the candidate vaccine 21 day apart or placebo, and the trial will end when either 116 people develop COVID-19 symptoms or 63 people develop moderate to severe disease. It adds that the firm's goal is for their vaccine to be at least 60 percent more effective than placebo.

But, as the Times notes, Novavax has never brought a vaccine to market. Still, the firm has secured $1.6 billion in funding from Operation Warp Speed in the US to develop and manufacture the vaccine and has an order for 60 million doses from the UK.