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Fourth vaccine option possible in US soon

Novavax trial

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WPTA21 and CNN) - A Phase 3 trial is in process for another COVID-19 vaccine, and its maker could soon apply for Emergency Use Authorization in the United States.

The Novavax trial includes about 30 thousand residents of the US and Mexico.

The company's vaccine against COVID-19 has been in the making since before the world realized it faced a pandemic.

In January of last year, Novavax scientists were closely watching an unusual cluster of pneumonia reported in China. They wondered whether that outbreak could be due to another version or recurrence of the coronavirus that causes severe acute respiratory syndrome or SARS.

"It occurred to us that this just might be 'SARS 2,' " Dr. Gregory Glenn said. "The sequence was published on the Internet, the genetic sequence for the virus -- and we could see it was a coronavirus. Then we kicked into action."

One of the trial participants tells WTHR in Indianapolis that she joined the trial via a lab in Cincinnati with hopes of contributing to the battle against the novel coronavirus.

Novavax works differently than the Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines already available in the US.

It uses insect cells to stimulate an immune response to pieces of the coronavirus spike protein.

Early results show 90 percent efficacy.

Approval by the FDA could come as soon as this summer.

Jonathan Shelley

Jonathan Shelley is the news director at WPTA TV, which he joined in 2016 following nine years in a similar role in New Orleans and previous news management positions in Oklahoma City and Las Vegas.

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