Stock futures opened higher Tuesday evening after newly published data from Moderna (MRNA) fueled hopes that a vaccine providing protection against Covid-19 would be developed in the relative near-term.
Moderna’s vaccine produced neutralizing antibodies in all 45 patients included in an early-stage human safety trial, according to data published after market close by the peer-reviewed New England Journal of Medicine.
The data built on earlier promising, but incomplete, results Moderna had reported in May. A late-stage trial of the vaccine candidate is set to begin July 27, with Moderna representing one of the companies farthest along in creating a potential inoculation against the coronavirus.
The development, manufacturing and distribution of a vaccine against the coronavirus has been viewed by many as the critical component to bringing daily life back meaningfully to a semblance of normalcy. The US government has offered billions in funds among a number of drugmakers including Moderna, with the hope of delivering 300 million doses of a safe and effective vaccine against Covid-19 by January 2021.
Shares of Moderna surged as much as 19.5% as of 5:32 p.m. ET Tuesday, adding to a year to date advance of more than 280% through market close. Contracts on the Dow rose TK points, or TK%, with the 30-stock index on track for a fourth straight session of gains. The Dow closed at a more than one-month high on Tuesday.