BioNTech SE and Pfizer developed a vaccine candidate against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. In a planned interim analysis, they were informed by an independent monitoring board that they had met the criteria to be considered effective at this point. Please note that subsequent and final analysis has to occur in the future. At this interim analysis, the vaccine had 90% effectivity at seven days after the second dose of the vaccine with acceptable safety. If this holds up, it has the high effectivity rates of childhood vaccines – that would be excellent results.
A few notes:
Require 2 doses of the vaccine so a lot of doses need to be produced. This is not long term safety and effectivity data – study results change over time for better, worse or stay the same. For example, durability of response to vaccine to be assessed. The study is not peer reviewed though the panel who assessed is considered generally independent – expect the results to be published in a top tier journal. They will apply for FDA Emergency Use Authorization (EUA). Vaccination campaigns will take several months to over a year. Pfizer did not take government or outside monies to remain independent.
By Dr Sumant Ramachandra, MD, PhD, MBA