News of the omicron Covid-19 variant ravished the markets last week as investors witnessed a drawdown in the S&P 500 and an uptick in the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX). To combat the new variant, Novavax (NASDAQ:NVAX) announced that it is currently developing a vaccine that would target it. In response, shares of NVAX stock have risen 8% during the past week.
NVAX Stock: What to Know
A spokesperson for Novavax said that “The initial work [on a new vaccine] will take a few weeks.” Afterwards, a vaccine will be ready for testing and manufacturing.
Novavax’s current vaccine contains a harmless version of Covid-19’s spike protein that can trigger the immune system to recognize the virus. The company stated that it is developing a spike protein that is based on the known genetic sequence of the omicron variant.
The Bottom Line on Novavax
While Novavax is actively working to develop a vaccine for the omicron variant, competitors are working just as hard. Vaccine makers Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) and Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) have also announced that they are testing the validity of their vaccines against the new variant. If necessary, these companies may produce a new vaccine.
Moderna stated that a vaccine targeted toward the omicron variant should be ready by early 2022. The biotech company is working on a booster candidate to address the new variant, while also testing a higher dose of its existing booster.
On the other hand, Pfizer stated that it could tailor its vaccine to fight against the omicron variant, and that a new vaccine should be ready within 100 days. A spokesperson for BioNTech (NASDAQ:BNTX), which helped Pfizer develop its vaccine, stated that new data should be available in two weeks.
The U.S. has approved Covid-19 vaccines from both Pfizer and Moderna, while Novavax is getting ready to file its vaccine for approval by the end of the year. Novavax has seen progress with other countries, receiving its first emergency approval in the Philippines and Indonesia earlier this month.
While it seems that Pfizer and Moderna have a generous head start, Novavax is working hard to catch up. Data in the coming weeks should shed some more light on which company will develop the most effective omicron variant vaccine.
On the date of publication, Eddie Pan did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.