Luxembourg is the first EU Member State to have received the coronavirus vaccine from the American laboratory Moderna. Following the marketing authorisation by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and the approval given by the European Commission on 6 January, 1,200 doses of the Moderna vaccine were delivered to Luxembourg this morning.
Luxembourg now has two safe and effective vaccines against SARS-CoV-2.
Moderna's formula has the advantage that it can be stored at -20°C, and not -70°C as is the case with Pfizer's formula. The two vaccines have similar effectiveness rates, according to their laboratories, of 95% and 94.1% respectively for Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna, and are based on the administration of two doses.
To date, the Grand Duchy has reserved a total of 110,462 doses of the Moderna vaccine and 414,210 doses of BioNTech/Pfizer.
It should also be noted that an additional delivery of 4,875 doses of the BioNTech/Pfizer vaccine arrived as planned in the Grand Duchy on 11 January 2021.
How does the COVID-19-vaccine by Moderna work? (source: EMA)
The COVID-19-vaccine by Moderna is a vaccine to prevent the coronavirus disease 2019 in people 18 years of age and older. It works by preparing the body to defend itself against COVID-19. It contains a molecule called mRNA which contains the instructions for making the spike protein. It is a protein on the surface of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that the virus needs to enter the body's cells.
When a person receives the vaccine, some of his or her cells read the mRNA instructions and temporarily produce the spike protein. The person's immune system will then recognise this protein as foreign and produce antibodies and activate T-cells (white blood cells) to attack it.
If the person later comes into contact with the SARS-CoV-2 virus, his or her immune system will recognise it and be ready to defend the body against it.
Press release by the Ministry of State / Ministry of Health