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Photo: Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Novavax, a Maryland biotechnology company, announced Monday that its COVID-19 vaccine was 90.4% effective in its Phase 3 trial, including against coronavirus variants.

Why it matters: The study of 29,960 participants in the U.S. and Mexico found the shot was safe and highly effective, paving the way for the FDA to clear a 4th vaccine for emergency use by the end of the year.

Between the lines: Because the U.S. is currently sitting on a significant supply of vaccines provided by Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson, the Biden administration could export its Novavax doses as it seeks to fulfill its goal of helping vaccinate the world.

By the numbers: The vaccine was found to be 90.4% effective overall and 100% effective at protecting against moderate and severe disease.

  • The vaccine has an efficacy of 96.4% against the original virus strain and 86.3% against the Alpha variant, which was first detected in the U.K.
  • The results of the study demonstrate efficacy comparable to the Pfizer and Modera vaccine.
  • Novavax said it remains on track to reach a manufacturing capacity of 100 million doses per month by the end of Q3 and 150 million doses per month by the end of Q4.
  • The U.S. government has invested $1.6 billion to support the development of Novavax's vaccine and preordered 110 million doses.
  • Novavax has pledged 1.1 billion doses to the World Health Organization's Covax initiative — with the company's chief executive saying many of the doses will be going to "low- and middle-income countries first."

What they're saying: “Many of our first doses will go to … low- and middle-income countries, and that was the goal to begin with,” Novavax CEO Stanley Erck told AP.

  • "It’s really very impressive,” Anthony Fauci, director of the NIAID, said per the Post. “It’s very important for the world’s population to have, yet again, another highly efficacious vaccine that looks in its trial to have a good safety profile.”
  • Virologist Matthew Frieman told the New York Times: "Novavax may be used as a booster in the U.S., but it certainly will be the first vaccine a lot of people are going to see around the world.”

What's next: Novavax said it would seek emergency authorization from the FDA and other regulators in Q3 of this year.

Go deeper

13 hours ago - Health

Biden to GOP governors who resist COVID rules: "Get out of the way"

President Biden speaks at the White House on Tuesday. Photo: Shawn Thew/EPA/Bloomberg via Getty Images

President Biden spoke out Tuesday against Republican governors who've sought to block vaccine and mask mandates, as COVID-19 cases spike across the U.S.

Why it matters: Biden has tried to avoid making the pandemic a partisan issue, but the Washington Post notes the White House "has grown increasingly frustrated" with Republican leaders looking to obstruct health measures.

21 hours ago - Health

Israel reinstates COVID-19 restrictions as cases surge

Elderly residents wait to receive their third dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine at a medical center in Tel Aviv on Aug. 2. Photo: Kobi Wolf/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Israel announced Tuesday it will tighten public health measures due to surging in COVID-19 case numbers.

Driving the news: The latest restrictions come as Israel saw nearly 4,000 new daily cases reported on Tuesday, the highest count so far since the country began experiencing an uptick last month, the AP reports.

10 hours ago - Health

America's pandemic pessimism returns

Data: Harris Poll; Chart: Axios Visuals

A majority of Americans now, once again, say the worst of the pandemic is yet to come, per new Harris polling provided exclusively to Axios.

Why it matters: We took a brief hiatus from worrying about the pandemic, but the Delta variant and the response to it appear to have sent us back to a dark place.