Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine 'around 91% effective'

Rodiano Bonacci
Aprile 3, 2021

The vaccine remains more than 91% effective against disease with any symptoms for six months, the companies said.

The emergence of new variants of the novel coronavirus, especially one dubbed B.1.351 that was first identified in South Africa, raised concerns over the efficacy of existing vaccines.

'The vaccine was 100% effective against severe disease as defined by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and 95.3% effective against severe COVID-19 as defined by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA),' Pfizer and BioNTech said in a joint statement.

The new study compared 1,131 children between 12 and 15 years old who received two doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, and 1,129 who received two doses of a placebo.

'Hopefully the protection might last years, but we won't know until we know'.

"These data also provide the first clinical results that a vaccine can effectively protect against now circulating variants, a critical factor to reach herd immunity and end this pandemic for the global population", Sahin said in a statement Thursday. A BLA is an application for full approval.

The vaccine is now authorized for emergency use in people ages 16 and older in the United States.

No cases of the disease were observed in South Africa during the phase-three trial study among participants who had received their second dose, the companies said in a statement. "Young people are less likely to have severe disease; and when they are infected, they are more likely to have asymptomatic infection, allowing them to transmit the disease to others". Time will tell, ' Fauci told CNN.

"It might be 100% effective, but as more data accumulates it is possible that cases will appear that show a lower protection rate", he said. That makes for lasting immune protection.

"From the 927 confirmed symptomatic cases of COVID-19 in the trial, 850 cases of COVID-19 were in the placebo group and 77 cases were in the BNT162b2 group, corresponding to vaccine efficacy of 91.3%", it said.

The nine strains were sequenced and six of them were confirmed to be of B.1.351 lineage, they said.

Pfizer's chief executive officer, Albert Bourla, said the updated result, which includes data on more than 12,000 people fully inoculated for at least six months, positions the drugmakers to submit for full United States regulatory approval.

The antibody response in these people remained 28-fold higher even after the second vaccine dose.

"The antibody levels were so high that they'd gone above the thresholds so they had to dilute them".

'I would not be surprised if this is a vaccine that we only get once'.

Both Pfizer and Moderna use a technology called messenger RNA or mRNA delivery as the basis of their vaccines.

Pfizer-BioNTech's vaccine was the first to receive emergency use authorization from the FDA on December 11 previous year.

The companies also studied a subset of teens to measure the level of virus-neutralizing antibodies a month after the second dose and found it was comparable to study participants aged 16 to 25 in the pivotal trial in adults.

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