Pfizer and BioNTech, the competition on anti Covid-19 vaccines

Pfizer and BioNTech, the competition on anti Covid-19 vaccines

The Wall Street Journal insight into Covid vaccines

The chief executive of the German company partnering with Pfizer in its coronavirus vaccination effort said the two are racing to ramp up production to meet the world's needs.

The two companies are now racing to increase their manufacturing capabilities, said Ugur Sahin, CEO of BioNTech. Both companies said they were confident they were able to supply all predetermined doses to governments, including the United States and the European Union.

BioNTech and Pfizer have pledged to provide more than 450 million doses this year and next year, as long as late stage trials prove the vaccine is safe and effective, and governments give the green light to its use. the WSJ .

The US government has placed an initial order for 100 million doses, with the option to purchase 500 million additional doses. The EU has ordered 200 million doses with an option for another 100 million. The government of Japan has ordered 120 million doses, while Britain has ordered 30 million.

All orders are subject to regulatory approval, and so far only the price of the agreement with the United States, $ 1.95 billion, has been disclosed.

BioNTech and Pfizer had previously set a goal of producing up to 100 million vaccines globally by the end of this year. That initial batch would only have been enough for 50 million people, though, because the vaccine, known as BNT162, consists of two vaccines, a so-called primary vaccination and a booster. The two companies did not disclose how many doses they have already made.

After these promised doses are delivered, " then we will enter into a struggle to supply them " more broadly, said Dr. Sahin. " There are gigantic quantities of vaccine doses that need to be provided to people, and this is a huge task that will take time ."

Dr Sahin said the two companies are ramping up production and building a global logistics network to continue supplying doses in addition to those already sold. The German company said in September that it bought a large manufacturing plant in the German city of Marburg from Novartis.The plant, said Dr Sahin, is expected to increase production capacity of the Covid-19 vaccine to 750 million doses per day. year by the end of 2021.

Pfizer also increased production for months, ordering new equipment and purchasing raw materials. It plans to produce the US doses at a facility in Kalamazoo, Michigan, and is using a facility in Puurs, Belgium for most of the rest of the world.

Final trials of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine could begin providing data later this month with regulators called upon to decide whether to authorize its use in an emergency.

" I believe we have a very good candidate for the vaccine, but now we have to work together to expand a supply infrastructure that makes the vaccine available globally, so that anyone who wants a vaccine can get a vaccine, " said the Dr. Sahin.

(Extract from the foreign press review by Epr )

This is a machine translation from Italian language of a post published on Start Magazine at the URL on Sun, 18 Oct 2020 05:47:52 +0000.