Moderna COVID-19 vaccine was tested in study based at Emory University

Company announced a successful test from trials at Emory and elsewhere, plans to seek federal approval for vaccine

Emory University researchers involved in the Moderna vaccine study were excited by Monday’s announcement that their work will soon be submitted to federal health officials for approval.

About 700 of the approximately 30,000 trial participants were involved in the study through Emory. Its Phase 3 study began on Aug. 11 and concluded Oct. 23.

“This was just a fantastic day for all of us,” said Colleen Kelley, associate professor of medicine at Emory University School of Medicine and principal investigator for the Moderna study at its Ponce de Leon Center.

Kelley said during a Zoom call with reporters the next important step is encouraging people to get vaccinated. Polling has shown ample vaccine hesitancy among Americans."We have a lot of work to do to convince people the vaccine is safe," Kelley said.

Dr. Nadine Rouphael, interim director of the Hope Clinic of Emory Vaccine Center, said their initial research found trial participants 65 and older did not have more adverse reactions during the study, though the sample size was small. Older Americans have disproportionately been diagnosed and died from the virus.