Final results from Pfizer's Covid-19 vaccine trial showed its shot had a 95 per cent success rate and two months of safety data, paving the way for the drugmaker to apply for an emergency United States authorisation within days, it said on Wednesday.
The company expects it can have 20 million doses of the vaccine, known as mRNA-1273, ready by year's end for shipment within the USA and between 500 million and 1 billion doses for global distribution in 2021. Only five infections occurred in volunteers who received the vaccine mRNA-1273, which is administered in two shots 28 days apart.
"Most of these vaccine candidates are in an advanced phase of clinical trials, hopefully authorisation will confirm these positive results, after which they will be quickly deployed and help us in overcoming the pandemic", she added.
Pfizer shares were 2.6% higher in USA morning trade at $36.98 and US -listed shares of partner BioNTech SE were up 3% at $89.61. It can, however, be kept in normal refrigeration for up to five days, or up to 15 days in a thermal shipping box. Moderna Inc on Monday released preliminary data for its vaccine, showing 94.5 per cent effectiveness.
Moderna's data provide further validation of the promising but previously unproven mRNA platform, which turns the human body into a vaccine factory by coaxing cells to make certain virus proteins that the immune system sees as a threat and mounts a response against.
Numerous countries have signed deals with the company already to receive millions of doses of its candidate vaccine.
The vaccine reportedly showed 94% effective for adults over 65 years, who are at particular risk from COVID-19.
Unlike Pfizer's vaccine, Moderna's shot can be stored at normal fridge temperatures, which should make it easier to distribute, a critical factor as COVID-19 cases are soaring, hitting new records in the United States and pushing some European countries back into lockdowns. For that we wait for the data.
The United States has the world's highest known number of COVID-19 cases and deaths with more than 11 million infections and almost 250,000 deaths. There are now rather more data accrued with, it is said, no serious side effects.
One unknown with this vaccine, and all the others now being tested, is whether they will stop COVID-19 spreading.
The trial also showed that more than 2% of those vaccinated experienced fatigue, while 3.7% of recipients experienced the side effect after the second dose.
More than 30,000 people took part in the Moderna study.
Stephen Evans, professor of pharmacoepidemiology at London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine said: "This ... is very good news indeed".
Moderna also said it would use its data to seek authorization in Europe and other regions.
The companies have a $1.95 billion contract with the US government to deliver 100 million vaccine doses beginning this year. Brussels also said it was in talks with Moderna about securing doses.