Novavax’s COVID-19 vaccine enters Phase 1 trials – is Moderna in trouble?

A vaccine is an unlikely solution. However, biotechs often tirelessly work on vaccines even after the expiration date of a virus. For example, vaccines for ebola, Zika, and Sars2 are still in development. Thus if a vaccine is unattainable before COVID-19 fizzles out, biotechs will continue to create a vaccine. Because we do not want another coronavirus infecting our lives, the market, and killing people we love. By now, the vaccine companies worth watching include:

It seems like a day can’t go by where we don’t hear about a biotech’s COVID-19 clinical prospects. Today Novavax (NASDAQ: NVAX) captured the world as they announced phase 1 trials are underway. 


Article outline 
1. The ins and outs of NVAX's Phase 1 trial 
2. NVAX's developments so far
2. Is now the best time to get in on NVAX?



What does NVAX’s phase 1 trial mean?

Flashback a few weeks, and Moderna was first in the vaccine race. However, Novavax entering phase 1 trials is resulting in the biotech to be right behind Moderna.

The phase 1 trials involves 130 healthy adults in Australia. Some patients will receive NVX-CoV2373, while Novavax will give other patients a placebo (control). Furthermore, vaccine candidates will receive dosages with and without an adjuvant (immune response enhancement). Novavax will then compare the results and progress with the most successful combination.

Novavax is anticipating positive safety results from the phase 1 trial. I agree with Novavax. (opinion not advice) Because phase 1 hurdles are relatively easy to overcome. Also, Novavax would not have launched a trial if the biotech didn’t think success, was likely. If the phase 1 trial shows early signs of success then Novavax will immediately  move to a phase 2 trial.

Novavax’s COVID-19 developments so far.

Due to Novavax just entering the trial space, we will look at their funding and manufacturing developments.

Back in early May Novavax received $384 million in funding from the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI). The Coalitions funding enables Novavax to progress NVX-CoV2373 through phase 1 and 2,and to ramp up production.

To put the funding into perspective, Novavax plans to manufacture 100 million vaccines, by the end of the year and 1 billion doses for 2021. Thus, from a manufacturing, and funding front, NVAX is thumbs up. Investors and the world just now need positive clinical trial results.


Is it too late to invest?

Before I start, I am obliged to remind our viewers that this is not advice only general commentary from my extensive research in this area.

Short Answer: Short-term (1-3 months) = the longer you speculate, the more chance you get burned.

Some investors might think yeah yeah big deal, Moderna and other vaccine companies are way ahead. I say, have you heard of the story of the hair and tortoise (slow and steady wins the race). While Novavax is behind other companies in the trials, they are at the forefront of manufacturing capacity and ability. Also, NVAX understands that “time is of critical importance during the pandemic”.  In turn, the company will ramp up production as soon as the trials show promising results. Thus, think of Novavax as a fast tortoise in the vaccine race at the moment.


At the end of the day, the world only needs one viable vaccine. There can only be one winner. If Novavax produces unpleasing test results, then the share price will crumble. Leaving speculative investors toast. Thus, if I  were investing in Novavax, I would ride the short-term wave. I would enter in the coming days off the downturn and ride the Phase 1, maybe phase 2, trials then surf to shore with a nice capital gain. (opinion not advice)


The information above should not be taken as financial advice. Youth Investment Group has no liability for personal financial interests or investment decisions. You should make your own investment decisions based upon your own research and what you believe is best for you.

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Written by Patrick Mcloughlin, Senior Manager of YIG.

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