Raleigh, NC

UNC Health is Enrolling Kids in Novavax COVID-19 Vaccine Trial

Alexandra Tsuneta

Novavax is recruiting children for clinical trials before their vaccine candidate has been approved for adults.

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In Raleigh, North Carolina, another drug maker, Novavax, is enrolling children for clinical trials before their vaccine becomes available for adults. Pfizer and Moderna are also currently conducting clinical trials for a children-friendly COVID-19 vaccine.

Currently, there are more than 2,000 COVID-19 cases in schools across the state. Getting a vaccine to children in North Carolina schools is a way to protect students and those around them including teachers, school officials, and other childcare providers and family members.

According to an interview with Wavy, “We one, stop transmitting in our community and also are able to prevent severe illness in that small number of children who would otherwise have it,” said Dr. Cindy Gay, principal investigator of UNC’s Novavax clinical trial site and associate professor in the Division of Infectious Diseases at the UNC School of Medicine.

The Novavax vaccine is different from the other vaccines currently in use, it's technology injects proteins directly into the body to evoke an immune response. Moderna and Pfizer vaccines, however, deliver a set of instructions to the body to teach it how to fight a COVID-19 infection. The Novavax vaccine would also not have to be stored in ultra-cold freezers, making it easier to roll out in rural communities both in America and abroad.

“This would be a dramatic change and allow children across the globe to go back to school, to not get severely ill, to not pass on COVID to individuals in their community,” Gay said.

According to Wavy, "Children in the study would receive two doses of the vaccine. They’ll be involved in follow-up calls and in-person visits for two years."

This new vaccine would mean that many more lives will be saved, more people can get vaccinated sooner, and more children will be safe. Doctor Cindy Gay explains that participating this trial would be for the "greater good".

If you are interested in participating in the study please contact:

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