The coronavirus Covid-19 vaccine candidate from both pharmaceutical companies did indeed get encouraging results after the large-scale phase 3 trial.
A vaccine developed by Pfizer (United States) and BioNTech (Germany) is 90% “effective” in preventing Covid-19 infections according to the large-scale phase 3 trial underway, the last step before an application for approval, the pharmaceutical companies jointly announced.
Patient protection was achieved seven days after the injection of the second dose of the vaccine and 28 days after the first, according to preliminary results.
UPDATE: We are proud to announce, along with @BioNTech_Group, that our mRNA-based #vaccine candidate has, at an interim analysis, demonstrated initial evidence of efficacy against #COVID19 in participants without prior evidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection.
— Pfizer Inc. (@pfizer) November 9, 2020
“A significant step forward”
“More than eight months after the start of the worst pandemic in more than a century, we believe that this step represents a significant step forward for the world in our battle against Covid-19,” said the Chairman and CEO of Pfizer, Albert Bourla, in a statement.
The first set of results from our Phase 3 Covid-19 vaccine trial provide initial evidence of our vaccine’s ability to prevent Covid-19.
50 million doses delivered in 2020
The announcement of the two pharmaceutical groups was greeted by US President Donald Trump. “The stock market is rising sharply, a vaccine is coming soon. 90% efficiency. What great news! He tweeted.
STOCK MARKET UP BIG, VACCINE COMING SOON. REPORT 90% EFFECTIVE. SUCH GREAT NEWS!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 9, 2020
The announcement of the two companies caused a jump in European stock markets.
Based on projections, Pfizer and BioNTech said they plan to deliver up to 50 million doses of vaccine globally in 2020 and up to 1.3 billion doses in 2021.
“More than 90% effective”
The “vaccine efficacy rate of more than 90%” was measured by comparing the number of participants infected with the new coronavirus in the group that received the vaccine and in the group receiving placebo, explain Pfizer and BioNtech in their press release.
In much of the world, Covid-19 infection rates are reaching record levels, hospital intensive care units are filling up and the death toll continues to rise.
Other ongoing clinical trials
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 10 clinical trials of vaccines are currently in phase 3 worldwide, including those of the American biotech Moderna, several Chinese state laboratories and the British AstraZeneca, in collaboration with the university from Oxford. Pfizer and BioNTech are the first to release interim results from these trials.
No vaccine has yet received approval for large-scale commercial distribution. But Chinese authorities have given the green light for emergency use for some of these vaccines.
In Russia, much of the political elite have said they have been vaccinated with the Sputnik V vaccine, which the government hopes to deploy massively in the coming months. The country submitted to the WHO at the end of October a request for prequalification of this vaccine, “registered” by the authorities in early August, which in Russia corresponds to the stage prior to the final phase of clinical trials. A second Russian vaccine was registered in mid-October.