Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) recently announced that it would join the growing list of drugmakers adjusting their clinical trial activities in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. The biotech company -- which focuses on developing vaccines and treatments using mRNA technology -- will pause enrollment in several studies.
The company will no longer enroll new patients in its phase 1 clinical trial investigating the safety and tolerability of escalating doses of mRNA-3704, an investigational treatment for the rare metabolic disorder methylmalonic acidemia.
Also, the company will pause enrollment in its phase 1 clinical trial for mRNA-3927, a potential treatment for propionic acidemia, which is also a metabolic disorder. Lastly, its phase 1 trial for mRNA-1653 -- a potential vaccine for two respiratory illnesses -- human metapneumovirus and parainfluenza virus 3 -- will also go on hiatus.
Moderna says it will monitor the COVID-19 outbreak and -- based on how the situation evolves -- will continue to make adjustments to its operations.
Given that COVID-19 spreads primarily from person to person, it isn't surprising that Moderna is taking measures to limit interactions between patients and physicians, which put all those involved at risk. Among the other drugmakers that have made similar adjustments to their clinical trial activities due to the pandemic is Eli Lilly. On March 23, the pharma giant announced that it would pause enrollment in its ongoing clinical trials, and would delay the start of new ones. Expect more drugmakers to make similar announcements soon.