Huge profits expected from virus vaccine
US drugmaker Pfizer and the German biotech firm BioNTech could rake in almost $13 billion in global sales from the coronavirus vaccine next year, according to US investment bank Morgan Stanley.
UPDATE: We are proud to announce, along with @BioNTech_Group, that our mRNA-based #vaccine candidate has, at an interim analysis, demonstrated initial evidence of efficacy against #COVID19 in participants without prior evidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection.— Pfizer Inc. (@pfizer) November 9, 2020
No other company has yet made similar claims about its effectiveness.
"We are a significant step closer to providing people around the world with a much-needed breakthrough to help bring an end to this global health crisis," Pfizer chairman Albert Bourla said.
We welcome the encouraging vaccine news from @pfizer & @BioNTech_Group & salute all scientists & partners around the 🌍 who are developing new safe, efficacious tools to beat #COVID19. The 🌍 is experiencing unprecedented scientific innovation & collaboration to end the pandemic!— Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus (@DrTedros) November 9, 2020
Pfizer is set to profit from the lifesaving vaccine as a commercial opportunity alongside BioNTech. The multibillion-dollar fortune would be split evenly between the drugmaker and the biotech firm, according to analysts.
Pfizer's half would be more than its best-selling product, a pneumococcal vaccine, which brought in around $5.8 billion last year, the Guardian reports.
The pharmaceutical company has agreed to supply the vaccine to the US for $19.50 per dose - a two-shot course would be priced at $39.
Meanwhile, the EU has ordered 200 million doses while the UK has ordered 40 million doses.
Pfizer turned down government funding, choosing to use $2 billion of its own money instead to develop the vaccine without US government-backed research funds.
Rival US drugmaker Johnson & Johnson, along with AstraZeneca, is developing a coronavirus vaccine in partnership with Oxford University. They have both pledged to make their vaccines available on a not-for-profit basis during the pandemic.
Dr. Anthony Fauci says COVID vaccine likely available to average citizens without conditions by next April. Calls news of its effectiveness “extraordinary” Speaking on CNN says “challenges” in distribution can be overcome. #7News pic.twitter.com/Hlou1hTHkK— Dan Hausle (@dhausleon7) November 10, 2020
This comes as the world's most respected infectious disease experts hinted that people could begin receiving the first COVID-19 vaccine as early as 2021.
Dr Anthony Fauci, the US government's top infectious diseases expert, said Americans could begin receiving a coronavirus vaccine within the "first four months" of 2021 in a move that has been described as a "game changer".
"If you hear something is 90 to 95 per cent effective, you're more likely to get vaccinated," Dr Fauci told CNN.
Originally published as Huge profits expected from virus vaccine