What happened

Shares of Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) rose more than 10% on Friday after the biotechnology company announced the commencement of its Phase 2 study for its novel coronavirus vaccine.

So what 

Moderna said the first participants in each age group of its Phase 2 study have received doses of its experimental COVID-19 vaccine, mRNA-1273. The study will evaluate the safety of mRNA-1273 and its ability to provoke an immune response in the human body. Participants will receive two vaccinations of mRNA-1273 spaced 28 days apart.

Moderna is seeking to enroll 600 healthy participants, including 300 people aged 18-55 and 300 people older than 55. Participants will receive either a 50 microgram dose, a 100 microgram dose, or a placebo. They will be monitored for 1 year after the second vaccination.

A person wearing productive gear working in a laboratory.

Moderna stock rose sharply on Friday after it announced the start of its Phase 2 study for its experimental coronavirus vaccine. Image source: Getty Images.

Now what 

The Phase 2 study comes after Moderna released promising early results from its Phase 1 study on May 18. Since that time, the biotech has been ramping up its production capabilities. On Thursday, Moderna extended a manufacturing agreement with CordenPharma, which will supply lipids for its COVID-19 vaccine candidate. 

Moderna also expects to begin a Phase 3 study for mRNA-1273 in July, "subject to finalization of the clinical trial protocol."