Pharmaceutical company Pfizer said on Monday that initial analysis showed their vaccine candidate for Covid-19 was more than 90 percent more effective in preventing infection.
News from Pfizer and its German counterpart, BioNTech SE, has been hailed as a major step forward in the fight against a virus that has harmed the global economy, affecting billions of daily lives. people and killed 1.26 million people – nearly 240,000 in the US alone.
The study found that those who received two doses as part of the trial saw 90% less symptomatic cases of Covid-19 than participants who received a placebo. This is a much higher success rate than many experts expected.
Full coverage of coronavirus outbreaks
“Today is a great day for science and humanity,”; Albert Bourla, president and chief executive officer of Pfizer, said in a statement. “We are reaching this milestone in our vaccine development program at a time when the world needs it most with record-setting infection rates, hospitals nearing capacity and The economy is struggling to reopen. “
Breakthroughs don’t mean vaccines will be available right away.
While there are no serious safety concerns, Pfizer said it will not apply to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for emergency licensing until valuable safety data becomes available. two months, probably not until the third week of November.
It is also unclear how long the immunity will last, as well as how and how widely the vaccine will become available. Pfizer said based on current forecasts, it is expected to globally produce 50 million doses of vaccine by 2020 and up to 1.3 billion doses by 2021.
Despite the unknown, international markets have welcomed the news, with Wall Street equity futures surging after the company made the announcement.
This is a developing story, check back for updates.