Moderna's headquarters in Massachusetts. Photo: Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Healthy patients who received the first doses of Moderna's coronavirus vaccine appeared to have generated antibody responses to the virus, according to early phase one trial data released by the company Monday.

The big picture: This is an early snapshot of a small sample size within a trial that is focused on the vaccine's safety. This is a positive first step, but still a first step.

Details: Eight healthy volunteers who received Moderna's vaccine developed antibodies that were similar to or exceeded the level of antibodies in patients who recovered from the disease caused by the virus, depending on the size of the dose.

  • Importantly, the vaccine appears to be "generally safe and well-tolerated" with no life-threatening side effects, the company said.

Yes, but: The data is limited, and there's no data yet on people older than 55 — a group that is at the highest risk of getting infected.

The stock market saw its biggest jump in weeks amid the news, with the S&P 500 rising 2.7% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average gaining more than 3% (or 700+ points), Axios' Courtenay Brown reports.

What to watch: A phase two trial has already been approved to start soon, and Moderna now expects the phase three trial for this vaccine, the most rigorously tested study, will begin by July.

  • The National Institutes of Health is leading this initial trial, and taxpayers have invested a half-billion dollars in the later-stage trials.

Go deeper

Aug 8, 2020 - Health

Poll: 1 in 3 Americans would decline COVID-19 vaccine

A trial COVID-19 vaccine. Photo: Silvio Avila/AFP via Getty Images

35% of Americans say they would refuse a coronavirus vaccine, even if it was free, approved by the Food and Drug Administration and available immediately, according to a Gallup poll released Friday.

The big picture: Health experts believe a vaccine — coupled with recommended public health measures — will be the path back to societal normalcy. But that outcome relies on a critical mass getting the vaccine so that the population can achieve herd immunity.

Updated 5 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 19,863,850 — Total deaths: 731,374 — Total recoveries — 12,117,346Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 5,044,864 — Total deaths: 162,938 — Total recoveries: 1,656,864 — Total tests: 61,792,571Map.
  3. Politics: Pelosi says states don't have the funds to comply with Trump's executive order on unemployment — Mnuchin says Trump executive orders were cleared by Justice Department.
  4. States: New York reports lowest rate of positive coronavirus test results since pandemic began
  5. Public health: Ex-FDA head: U.S. will "definitely" see 200,000 to 300,000 virus deaths by end of 2020. 
  6. Schools: 97,000 children test positive for coronavirus in two weeks — Nine test positive at Georgia school where photo showing packed hallway went viral .
Updated 11 hours ago - Health

World coronavirus updates

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

Australian officials in Victoria announced another 19 deaths from COVID-19 on Monday morning local time, breaking the state and national record set the previous day of 17. Victoria also reported 322 new cases — the lowest in 13 days.

The big picture: Australia was on track to suppress the virus in May, but cases have been spiking in Victoria in recent weeks, where a state of disaster was declared last week, enabling officials to introduce restrictions including a night-time curfew in state capital Melbourne.