Japan's Daiichi Sankyo says mRNA COVID vaccine successful in booster trial

A man walks past a sign of Japanese pharmaceutical company Daiichi Sankyo Co., Ltd. at the company's head office in Tokyo July 17, 2009. REUTERS/Stringer

TOKYO, Nov 15 (Reuters) - Japan's Daiichi Sankyo Co (4568.T) said on Tuesday its mRNA-based COVID-19 vaccine had reached its primary endpoint in a trial of the shot as a booster.

In a trial of about 5,000 Japanese adults, those who had received the vaccine, known as DS-5670, developed levels of COVID-neutralising antibodies that were as good as or better than those of people who had had other mRNA shots, the company said in a release.

Based on the results, Daiichi Sankyo will file a new-drug application to regulators in January 2023.

Approval would give Japan a home-grown source for mRNA vaccines, which have made up the bulk of its COVID inoculations to date.

Japan has relied on imports of shots developed by U.S.-based drugmakers Pfizer Inc (PFE.N) and Moderna Inc (MRNA.O).

Daiichi Sankyo's shares jumped on the news, rising 3.3% versus a 0.1% advance in the benchmark Nikkei (.n225) gauge.

Reporting by Rocky Swift; Editing by Bradley Perrett

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