BioNTech CEO said there was a “relatively high” possibility that the vaccine they made with Pfizer would protect against the UK’s new variant coronavirus

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  • BioNTech CEO Ugur Sahin, whose company is Pfizer’s vaccine partner in Europe, told reporters on Tuesday that the “likelihood” that their injection would work with the UK variant was “relatively high,” the Associated Press reported. .
  • Sahin noted that “we don’t know at this time whether our vaccine is also capable of providing protection against this new variant,” and it will take up to two weeks to get the data from the experiment to learn more about it. efficacy of the vaccine.
  • Parts of the UK entered a tighter lockdown last weekend after learning that a new variant of the coronavirus could be up to 70% more transmissible.
  • Visit the Business Insider homepage for more stories.

The CEO of BioNTech, the German pharmaceutical company that has partnered with Pfizer to develop the first COVID-19 vaccine cleared for emergency use, is confident that his injection can cope with the new strain of coronavirus identified in the UK United.

BioNTech CEO Ugur Sahin told reporters on Tuesday “it is very likely that the immune response of this vaccine can also cope with new variants of the virus,” the Associated Press reported.

Sahin said they are currently running experiments to confirm this and should see results within the next two weeks.

He added that the “probability” that their vaccine will work on the British variant was “relatively high”, according to the AP, because the proteins of the new strain, which are the targets of the vaccine, are 99% similar to other strains. .

Read more: How pharmaceutical giant Pfizer partnered with little-known biotechnology to develop the first licensed coronavirus vaccine in record time

Parts of the UK entered a tighter lockdown on Sunday after learning the new strain could be up to 70% more transmissible, Business Insider’s Joshua Zitser reported. Since then, several countries including Denmark, Ireland, Belgium and Israel have restricted inbound travel from the UK.

Dr Scott Gottlieb, the former head of the FDA, said on Monday that he believed the new variant “is already in the United States”, so a travel ban against the United Kingdom would not be effective. Dr Anthony Fauci agreed that the new strain was probably already in the United States.

The emergence of the new strain underscores what experts have been saying for months – we’ll likely need to get annual COVID-19 vaccines, just like we get different flu shots each year to fight the new strains as we go. ‘they appear.

As Business Insider’s Dr Catherine Schuster-Bruce reported, medical experts have said coronavirus vaccines will likely work against the newer variants.

“We have no particular reason to believe that immunization with current vaccines is going to be less effective against the different variants that are circulating,” a professor of pediatrics at the University of Bristol said on Monday.

Meanwhile, Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna’s first vaccines are being distributed across the United States following emergency use approvals from the Food and Drug Administration this month.

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