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COVID-19 vaccine: Pfizer announces 95% efficacy, deliveries could start 'before Christmas'

COVID-19 vaccine: Pfizer announces 95% efficacy, deliveries could start 'before Christmas'

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NEW YORK: Pfizer and BioNTech said Wednesday that a completed study of their experimental Covid-19 vaccine showed it was 95 percent effective. Chances are that the vaccine deliveries could start before Christmas (December 25). 

They said the two-dose vaccine had no serious safety concerns and that the companies will apply for emergency use authorization from US regulators within days.

This development has been reported days after Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE announced their mRNA-based vaccine candidate, BNT162b2 against SARS-CoV-2 has demonstrated evidence of efficacy against COVID-19 in participants without prior evidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection.

The announcement came amid a second surge in the number of COVID-19 cases in the United States and other parts of the world, and boosted hopes for an end to the pandemic that has so far infected 56,563,840 people across the world.

"The study results mark an important step in this historic eight-month journey to bring forward a vaccine capable of helping to end this devastating pandemic," said Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla.

ALSO READ: Moderna says its COVID-19 vaccine is 94.5% effective

"With hundreds of thousands of people around the globe infected every day, we urgently need to get a safe and effective vaccine to the world," he added.

Pfizer had said last week after a preliminary analysis that its product was more than 90 percent effective.

On Monday another biotech firm involved in the race to develop a vaccine, Moderna, said its own vaccine was 94.5 percent effective, according to a preliminary analysis.

Pfizer has previously said it expected to contact the US Food and Drug Administration to apply for an Emergency Use Authorization by the third week of November.

The FDA had imposed a requirement on Covid-19 vaccine makers of having at least two months of follow-up with volunteers after their second dose, taken 28 days after the first, in order to ensure the drugs are safe.

Moderna developed its vaccine along with the US National Institutes for Health.

Both vaccines use mRNA (messenger ribonucleic acid) technology to deliver genetic material to the body that makes human cells create a protein from the virus.

This trains the immune system to be ready to attack if it encounters SARS-CoV-2.

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