Coronavirus Updates: Europe clinches deal to buy up to 300M doses of Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine

Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine less effective against South African variant (New Study)
Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine less effective against South African variant (New Study)

Pfizer and BioNTech announced Wednesday that they have reached an agreement to supply up to 300 million doses of their experimental COVID-19 vaccine to Europe.

The agreement with the European Commission provides a supply of 200 million doses and an option to request an additional 100 million doses, according to a joint press release from Pfizer and BioNTech.

Doses allocated for European Union member states will be produced in BioNTech’s manufacturing sites in Germany as well as at Pfizer’s site in Belgium. If the vaccine candidate receives authorization from the European Medicines Agency, then doses will be ordered by the EU member states who have elected to receive the vaccine as part of the agreement.

Deliveries are anticipated to start by the end of 2020, subject to clinical success and regulatory approval, according to the press release.

“Today’s finalized supply agreement with the European Commission represents the largest initial order of vaccine doses for Pfizer and BioNTech to date and a major step toward our shared goal of making a COVID-19 vaccine available to vulnerable populations,” Pfizer chairman and CEO Albert Bourla said in a statement Wednesday.

Last month, the European Medicines Agency began a rolling review of data on the efficacy and safety of the vaccine candidate to determine whether the drug should be authorized for use.

Pfizer, a New York-based pharmaceutical giant, and BioNTech, a German biotechnology company, announced Monday that the experimental vaccine appears to be at least 90% effective in an early analysis. The European Medicines Agency said in a statement Monday that it “has not yet had a chance to formally assess these efficacy data.”

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