European Union signs COVID-19 vaccine deal with CureVac

Pablo Tucker
November 19, 2020

Pfizer Inc said on Wednesday that final results from the late-stage trial of its COVID-19 vaccine showed it was 95% effective, adding it had the required two-months of safety data and would apply for emergency US authorization within days.

A key advantage of Moderna's vaccine is that it does not need ultra-cold storage like Pfizer's, making it easier to distribute.

Russia's Sputnik V vaccine against Covid-19 is 92% effective at protecting people, the country's sovereign wealth fund said on Wednesday. It can, however, be kept in normal refrigeration for up to five days, or up to 15 days in a thermal shipping box.

"Assuming we get an emergency use authorization, we'll be ready to ship through Warp Speed nearly in hours", Hoge said. Moderna Inc on Monday released preliminary data for its vaccine, showing 94.5 per cent effectiveness.

Pfizer Inc. Chief Executive Officer Albert Bourla cashed out 62 per cent of his stock in the company on the same day it announced the success of its experimental COVID-19 vaccine, a regulatory filing showed.

According to Reuters, experts said the Russian data was encouraging but warned that the results were only based on a small number of trial volunteers who had contracted the virus.

Pfizer's final results come as the virus is running rampant around the world, placing an enormous strain on healthcare systems with record numbers of new cases and hospitalizations.

"This is the evidence we needed to ensure that the most vulnerable people are protected", said Andrew Hill, senior visiting research fellow at the University of Liverpool's department of pharmacology.

Moderna's vaccine can be stored for up to six months at -20C though it is expected to be stable for 30 days at normal fridge temperatures of 2 to 8 degrees Celsius (36°-46°F). There are now rather more data accrued with, it is said, no serious side effects. The only severe adverse events experienced by volunteers were fatigue (3.8%) and headaches (2%) after the second dose. Older adults tended to report fewer and milder adverse events.

Europe's health regulator said on Monday it had launched a real-time "rolling review" of Moderna's vaccine, following similar reviews of vaccines from Pfizer and AstraZeneca. And it's a good outcome as far as safety is concerned...

Authorization of vaccines for children will take longer.

Where are we in the COVID-19 vaccine race? Only Pfizer has started vaccinating volunteers under age 18 and as young as 12.

Moderna's experimental vaccine was 94.5% effective in preventing COVID-19 based on interim data from a late-stage trial, the company said on Monday, becoming the second United States drugmaker to report results that far exceed expectations.

"We are going to have a vaccine that can stop COVID-19", Moderna President Stephen Hoge said in a telephone interview.

Next year, the United States government could have access to more than 1 billion doses just from the two vaccine makers, more than needed for the country's 330 million residents.

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