US Nears Funding for Moderna's Bird Flu Vaccine Trial Amid Spread to Mammals

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US Nears Funding for Moderna's Bird Flu Vaccine Trial Amid Spread to Mammals

Bird Flu Concerns Prompt Funding for Moderna's mRNA Vaccine Trial

The United States government is nearing a deal to fund a late-stage trial of Moderna's mRNA vaccine against the H5N1 bird flu virus, according to a report by the Financial Times. This decision comes as the virus continues to spread through egg farms and cattle herds, raising concerns about its potential impact on human health.

The funding, expected to reach tens of millions of dollars, will be provided by the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA). The agreement also includes a commitment to purchase doses of the vaccine if the phase-three trials prove successful.

This development follows the confirmation of a second human case of bird flu in the United States since the virus was first detected in dairy cattle in late March. The increasing spread of the virus to mammals, including the unprecedented outbreaks in dairy cows, has heightened concerns about its potential transmission to humans through the milk supply.

Since 2022, bird flu has infected over 90 million chickens, 9,000 wild birds, 52 dairy herds, and three people in the United States. The government's decision to fund Moderna's vaccine trial reflects the urgency to develop effective measures to combat the spread of this potentially dangerous virus.