First results expected: how hopeful is the vaccine?

First results expected
How Hopeful is the Vaccine?

Biontech is expecting the first results on its vaccine candidate. Photo: Andreas Arnold / dpa

© dpa-infocom GmbH

The tougher the restrictions become, the more urgent a vaccine against Covid-19 is expected. Soon there could be the first results of a candidate.

The Mainz-based pharmaceutical company Biontech expects the first meaningful results of the ongoing effectiveness tests of its corona vaccine candidate in the next few days.

“It won’t be long until we have the first so-called readout, where we can see whether the vaccine is able to protect,” said Biontech boss Ugur Sahin in an interview with the VRM (Mainz) newspapers.

“By mid-November we will not only have activity but also tolerance data,” he said in the conversation held on Thursday. If these data are positive, the documents would be submitted to the US FDA by mid-November. In addition, Biontech is already in a so-called rolling process with the European Medicines Agency (EMA). “That means that whenever we have new data, we submit the data to the authorities so that they can be checked in real time.”

These authorities could then decide on an emergency approval based on these results. “If the approval takes place, the next question is: Can we in principle deliver vaccines?”, Sahin explained the next steps. «We have already started producing vaccine. It is stored with us, is in quality controls and has not yet been released. ” This approval would only take place if approval was available. “In principle, these steps can be taken this year.”

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Regarding the possible effectiveness of vaccination protection, Sahin said that the possible vaccine mimicked the natural infection. “We assume that there will be immunity that, in my opinion, will last for at least a year. An annual follow-up immunization would then be necessary. I assume that we can probably wait even longer. ”


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