First COVID-19 vaccine offers 90% protection. Test on 43,500 people in 6 countries shows no safety concerns, Pfizer and BioNTech say
After many weeks of bad news and setback on the coronavirus vaccine development, this morning- Pfizer announced that its experimental COVID-19 vaccine was more than 90% effective. The vaccine has been tested on 43,500 people in six countries, with no safety concerns raised. This is a major victory in the fight against a pandemic that has killed more than a million people.
In a joint announcement, Pfizer and its partner BioNTech conducted human trials on 43,500 people in six countries, with no safety concerns raised. The two companies plan to apply for an emergency approval from the FDA by the end of the month to use the vaccine.
Back in July, we wrote about Pfizer after the drug giant, and the biotech firm BioNTech reportedly improves immune responses in healthy patients. According to the study documented in a 16-page paper, researchers randomly assigned 45 patients to get one of three doses of the vaccine or placebo. Twelve receive a 10 microgram dose, 12 a 30 μg dose, 12 a 100 μg dose, and nine a placebo. The 100 μg dose caused fevers in half of the patients; a second dose was not given at that level.
On Monday, Pfizer and German partner BioNTech SE released successful data from a large-scale clinical trial of a coronavirus vaccine. The two companies said they have so far found no serious safety concerns and expect to seek U.S. authorization this month for emergency use of the vaccine.If authorized, the number of doses will initially be limited and many questions remain, including how long the vaccine will provide protection. However, the news provides hope that other COVID-19 vaccines in development may also prove effective.
“Today is a great day for science and humanity,” Albert Bourla, Pfizer’s chairman and chief executive, said.
“We are reaching this critical milestone in our vaccine development program at a time when the world needs it most with infection rates setting new records, hospitals nearing over-capacity and economies struggling to reopen.”
Pfizer expects to seek broad U.S. authorization for emergency use of the vaccine for people aged 16 to 85. To do so, it will need two months of safety data from about half the study’s 44,000 participants, which his expected late this month.