Shares of Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) climbed 4% on Monday after the biotechnology company announced three new vaccine development programs.
Moderna intends to use the lessons it learned with its coronavirus vaccine to advance its pipeline of drugs. The biotech will use its messenger RNA (mRNA) technology to develop vaccine candidates for the seasonal flu, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and Nipah virus.
"The uniquely challenging year of 2020 for all of society proved to be an extraordinary proof-of-concept period for Moderna," CEO Stephane Bancel said in a press release. "Even as we have shown that our mRNA-based vaccine can prevent COVID-19, this has encouraged us to pursue more ambitious development programs."
Moderna demonstrated the effectiveness of its mRNA technology when clinical trials showed its coronavirus vaccine to be 94% effective against COVID-19 and 100% effective at preventing severe forms of the disease. Governments around the world have raced to purchase large quantities of Moderna's vaccine. These purchases, in turn, have helped Moderna's cash reserves grow to more than $5 billion, which it now plans to use to fund its new development programs.
With a total of 24 mRNA development projects currently underway, Moderna -- and its shareholders -- have many ways to win in the years ahead.