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 US authorisation within days, it said on Wednesday. Pfizer said it expected the US FDA vaccine advisory committee to review and discuss the data in a public meeting that will likely be held in December.
The efficacy rate of the vaccine, developed by Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech, is the highest of any candidate in late-stage clinical trials so far. Global shares edged higher on Wednesday as Pfizer's trial results more than offset concerns around the stubbornly high global infection rate. Pfizer shares rose 2.9 per cent when US markets opened while BioNTech jumped 4 per cent.
Pfizer has said it is exploring possibilities to make the Covid-19 vaccine available in India. “The firm remains committed to engaging with the government of India to advance its dialogue and explore opportunities to make the vaccine available for use in India,” it said.
Pfizer and BioNTech said they plan to submit the data to other regulatory agencies around the world.
V K Paul, member-health, NITI Aayog, and also the chairman of the committee on vaccine administration, said: “The vaccine needs to be kept in -70-degree Celsius temperature and will be difficult for countries to scale up... We are discussing this. The Pfizer vaccine will not be available to us for a few months.” The government is examining all possibilities to extend cold-chain facilities in case Pfizer is procured.