Story at a glance

  • Gottlieb said he would take a vaccine developed in the first round of production.
  • He said the vaccine won’t create sterile immunity and will work more like a flu vaccine.
  • On Monday, a vaccine developed by drugmaker Moderna and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases went into phase three trials.

Former Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Scott Gottlieb on Monday said he would take a coronavirus vaccine developed in the first batch of production despite not knowing the side effects or full efficacy associated with the vaccine. 

“I would certainly feel confident taking that vaccine,” Gottlieb said Monday during an appearance on CNBC’s “Squawk Box.” 


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“I think I would feel that way about any vaccine that comes through the regulatory process and is indicated for me,” he said, explaining the first batches of a coronavirus vaccine may be first authorized for first responders and older populations. 


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Gottlieb said the vaccine won't create sterile immunity, meaning it will work more like the flu vaccine and reduce the instances of severe outcomes of infection. 

“They’re not going to prevent you from getting the infection 100 percent, and there are still going to be people who breakthrough and get severe disease even though they’ve been vaccinated,” Gottlieb said. 

On Monday, a vaccine developed by drugmaker Moderna and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) went into phase three trials, the first U.S. candidate to reach that step in testing. About 30,000 adult volunteers are set to be enrolled in the trial. The first patient was dosed at a site in Savannah, Ga. 

Earlier testing of the vaccine induced immune responses in all volunteers, according to data published in the New England Journal of Medicine. While the vaccine was generally safe, mild side effects included chills, headaches, muscle pain and fatigue. 

About 25 potential vaccines are in clinical trials worldwide, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). 

More than 4.2 million coronavirus cases have been confirmed in the U.S. with more than 147,000 deaths. There are more than 16.3 million confirmed cases with more than 650,000 deaths worldwide.


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Published on Jul 27, 2020