Thursday, 17 June, 2021


Pfizer, BioNTech say vaccine effective against South Africa variant

Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 doses are prepared at a vaccine outreach clinic at Mt. Zion Baptist Church in Kalamazoo Michigan on Tuesday Pfizer vaccine effective for 12-15-year-olds
Hannah Rogers | 05 April, 2021, 17:35

The South African study among 800 people in South Africa, nine cases of the South African variant of Covid were observed - all in the group not given the vaccine.

'These data confirm the favorable efficacy and safety profile of our vaccine and position us to submit a Biologics License Application to the U.S. FDA, ' Albert Bourla, Pfizer's chairman and chief executive officer, said in a statement.

The companies said the results contained data on more than 12,000 participants who had been fully inoculated for at least six months.

Pfizer and BioNTech say they plan to share the results with worldwide regulatory agencies soon.

There were 927 symptomatic cases of Covid-19, only 77 of whom were given the vaccine - a 91.3 percent degree of efficacy according to the statement, which was issued by non-peer reviewed press release.

The vaccine is also 100 percent effective in preventing severe cases as defined by the US Centers for Disease Control - or 95.3 percent effective against severe cases if we are to follow the definition of the US Food and Drug Administration.

The results follow separate data that showed the vaccine is safe and effective in 12- to 15-year olds, paving the way for the drugmakers to seek USA and European approvals for this group.

Some 100 people aged 80 to 96 received their vaccine doses three weeks apart, before the United Kingdom adopted a policy of stretching the time between jabs to 12 weeks.

The updated trial data would not prompt the company to change that development strategy, a BioNTech spokeswoman said.

According to officials, "Moderna is continually learning, adapting and working closely with its partners and the US government to identify ways to facilitate accelerated vaccine administration, address bottlenecks and accelerate production".

Pfizer also noted no serious safety concerns up to six months after receiving the second dose, and 100% efficacy in preventing COVID-19 cases in South Africa, where the B.1.351 variant is prevalent.

This was welcomed by the drugmakers, because in February they said a laboratory test suggested that their vaccine produced lower levels of antibodies against this strain.

'The vaccine elicits such high levels of antibodies that even when confronted with a variant. there's still meaningful protection, ' Hensley told CNN.

There were 32 cases of severe COVID-19 illness, all of which were in the placebo group.

The FDA announced two revisions to the emergency use authorization (EUA) granted to Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine in the hopes that it will help expedite the rollout. AstraZeneca last month began a study of its vaccine among 6- to 17-year-olds in Britain.

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