Since yesterday, the EMA, the European Medicines Agency, has validated the Moderna laboratory vaccine against Covid-19. It has a profile quite similar to the one designed by Pfizer-BioNTech.

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Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines: what makes them different?

The same technique

These two vaccines use a new technique based on messenger RNA. It is indeed a non-infectious part of the virus’s genetic material which is used to “code” a protein, the spike or spicule. This messenger RNA will be packaged in a dose of vaccine and then injected into the body. It will therefore ask our cells to produce the famous spike protein. Which will trigger a response from our immune system.

Almost equivalent efficiency

For Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech, two doses are needed to be protected. The two vaccines show very high efficacy rates: 94.1% for Moderna and 95% for Pfizer-BioNTech. They therefore make it possible to prevent serious forms of the disease in the short term. But, there are uncertainties about the duration of this protection. So far, they have the same short-term side effects, most often mild, such as pain at the injection site or temporary fatigue.

Easier storage for Moderna

Side difference: there is the storage temperature. – 20 degrees for Moderna, against – 70 degrees for Pfizer-BioNTech. Moderna’s vaccine therefore does not need a “super-freezer”. It is therefore a little easier to manage in terms of logistics.