As the omicron variant picks up speed, investors are turning to vaccine stocks that could potentially profit. The U.S. is currently averaging 121,107 new Covid-19 cases per day and showing no signs of slowing down. In New York City, the percentage of people testing positive for Covid-19 doubled in three days this week. Dr. Jay Varma, a professor at Cornell and senior health advisor to the mayor of New York City, tweeted that “we’ve never seen this before in #NYC.” However, good news from Novavax (NASDAQ:NVAX) today is sending NVAX stock soaring and providing some hope amid this next phase of the pandemic.
On the bright side, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced this morning that they approved Covovax as a vaccine for emergency use. Covovax is Novavax’s two-dose coronavirus vaccine that can be stored in a normal refrigerator for up to six months, making the vaccine ideal for international countries due to shipping times.
Dr Mariângela Simão, an assistant-director general for WHO, commented on the approval:
“Even with new variants emerging, vaccines remain one of the most effective tools to protect people against serious illness and death from SARS-COV-2. This listing aims to increase access particularly in lower-income countries, 41 of which have still not been able to vaccinate 10% of their populations, while 98 countries have not reached 40%.”
With the emergency use listing (EUL) in mind, shares of NVAX stock are trading higher by 4% this morning. Let’s dive into the details on the Covovax vaccine.
What to Know as NVAX Stock Pops Following WHO Approval
- According to results from a Phase 3 clinical trial earlier this week, Covovax is 90.4% effective against infection and 100% effective against moderate to severe illness. The trial was conducted with 29,949 adults in the U.S. and Mexico.
- Approximately two-thirds of the participants were dosed with the Covovax vaccine, while the other third received a saline placebo.
- Over the next three months, 77 of the participants in the study tested positive for Covid-19. Out of that number, 14 people had received real vaccines, while the other 63 people received placebos.
- Additionally, no moderate or severe illness was reported in participants who received the vaccine.
- However, the vaccine was only tested against the alpha variant, which was the dominant circulating strain at the time of study.
- Novavax stated that they are currently testing whether the vaccine is effective against the omicron variant. Moreover, the company has started developing an omicron-specific vaccine that will undergo testing soon.
- Furthermore, Novavax’s vaccine received authorization in Indonesia last month and is currently pending approval in Japan.
- The vaccine will be produced by the Serum Institute of India under license from Novavax. Additionally, it will launch within the next six months.
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.