Pfizer says vaccine lasts 6 months, protects against variants

The COVID-19 vaccine developed by Pfizer and partnering biotechnology company BioNTech has proven “highly effective” against the coronavirus — including variants — for at least six months after full inoculation.

The two companies announced on Thursday that the latest phase of testing — which includes an analysis of 927 confirmed symptomatic cases of COVID-19, and 46,307 trial participants total — showed the vaccine to be 91.3% effective against transmission.

In terms of “severe” illness and death, the vaccine is 95%, and up to 100%, effective, according to definitions set by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), respectively.

Furthermore, data from more than 12,000 recipients of Pfizer’s vaccine demonstrates the shot’s safety for a vast majority.

“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,” said Albert Bourla, chairman and CEO of Pfizer, in a statement. “The high vaccine efficacy observed through up to six months following a second dose and against the variant prevalent in South Africa provides further confidence in our vaccine’s overall effectiveness.”

A South Korean elderly woman receiving vaccine dose
Overall, Pfizer’s vaccine was shown to be 91.3% effective against transmission, regardless of disease severity.

“It is an important step to further confirm the strong efficacy and good safety data we have seen so far, especially in a longer-term follow-up,” added Ugur Sahin, CEO and co-founder of BioNTech. “These data also provide the first clinical results that a vaccine can effectively protect against currently circulating variants, a critical factor to reach herd immunity and end this pandemic for the global population.”

Credit: NYPOST

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