A health ministry official reported on Monday that the Sputnik V vaccine of Russia against the coronavirus have an efficacy more than 90 percent.
The declaration came after US pharmaceutical company Pfizer and German biotechnology company BioNTech declared that their own experimental vaccine was effective more than 90 percent.
In a statement, Oksana Drapkina, director of a research institute under the Russian health ministry, reported: We are responsible for monitoring the effectiveness of the Sputnik V vaccine among citizens who have received it as part of the mass vaccination programme. He also said: Based on our observations, it is also more than 90 percent. The appearance of another effective vaccine – this is good news for everyone.
Indeed, about 50 million people have been infected by the COVID-19 virus. It caused the death of more than 1.2 million. With the onset of cold weather and the holidays in the coming months, tens of thousands more deaths are actually worried.
Furthermore, Pfizer and BioNTech, are currently is preparing to apply later this month for emergency-use approval from the US Food and Drug Administration, once the necessary safety information is available.
On his part, CEO of Pfizer, Albert Bourla, said: Pfizer and our collaborator, BioNTech, announced positive efficacy results from our Phase 3, late-stage study of our potential COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccine candidate was found to be more than 90 percent effective in preventing COVID-19 in participants without evidence of prior SARS-CoV-2 infection in the first interim efficacy analysis.
He also added: The results demonstrate that our mRNA-based vaccine can help prevent COVID-19 in the majority of people who receive it. This means we are one step closer to potentially providing people around the world with a much-needed breakthrough to help bring an end to this global pandemic.
Nevertheless, Bourla declared that the company could not apply for FDA Emergency Use Authorization based only on these efficacy results. They require more data. He said: We estimate that a median of two months of safety data following the second and final dose of the vaccine candidate – required by FDA’s guidance for potential Emergency Use Authorization – will be available by the third week of November.
Pfizer’s declaration created a wide optimism to a world desperate for the means to get finally the catastrophic pandemic under control. In fact, the strong results were a surprise. Previously, scientists have alerted for months that any COVID-19 shot may be only as good as flu vaccines effective over 50 percent and needed yearly immunizations. Fauci already declared that he would be happy with a COVID-19 vaccine that was effective for 60 percent
Otherwise, whatever the ultimate level of protection, no one knows if people will require regular vaccinations. Besides, volunteers in the study received a coronavirus test just if they have symptoms, making more question about if vaccinated people could get infected but without show any symptoms and unknowingly spread the virus.
Pfizer has evaluated that it could have 50 million doses available globally by the end of 2020, sufficient for 25 million people.