New COVID-19 vaccine to show results by summer: creator

The new COVID-19 vaccine will take some time to show results. People can expect life to go back to normal next winter, according to BioNTech co-founder Professor Ugur Sahin


Sahin told BBC on Sunday that BioNTech’s “90% effective” COVID-19 vaccine, developed in collaboration with US pharma Pfizer, will take at least till next summer to show its full impact.

“Summer will help us because the infection rate will go down,” said Sahin.

He said that the vaccine may reduce coronavirus transmission between people by 50%, if not 90%.

Pfizer announced on November 9 that their vaccine showed “90% efficacy” in treating COVID-19 after undergoing trials that involved 40,000 participants from six countries.

Immune responses were observed in the participants just seven days after the second dose, and 28 days after the first, according to Pfizer.

US biotech firm Moderna was the second to announce that its experimental COVID-19 vaccine was “94.5% effective”. Moderna’s third round of clinical trials involved more than 30,000 participants.

Clinical trials in Pakistan

In September, Pakistan started its first-ever clinical trials of the Chinese COVID-19 vaccine, Ad5-nCoV. Phase three of the clinical trials are expected to conclude by January, 2021.

Of 40,000 volunteers from China, Russia, Chile, Mexico, Saudia Arabia, Argentina, 8,000 to 10,000 will be from Pakistan, according to Federal Minister for Planning Asad Umer.

Initial results are expected in four to six months.

Primary trial sites in Pakistan include:

  • Aga Khan University Hospital (Karachi)
  • Indus Hospital (Karachi)
  • Shaukat Khanum Memorial Hospital (Lahore)
  • University of Health Sciences (Lahore)
  • Shifa International Hospital (Islamabad)

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