CoronavirusCovid-19Health

Pfizer/BioNTech Optimistic of Vaccine’s Effectiveness Against New Coronavirus Strains

Pfizer and BioNTech said Friday its coronavirus vaccine has shown effectiveness against two new variants in a preliminary study.

Researchers from Pfizer and the University of Texas Medical Branch said the vaccine showed “no reduction in neutralization activity” against the coronavirus mutation shared by the two new strains first identified in South Africa and the United Kingdom.

“Pfizer, BioNTech and UTMB are encouraged by these early, in vitro study findings,” a BioNTech news release said, CNN reported. “Further data are needed to monitor the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine’s effectiveness in preventing COVID-19 caused by new virus variants. If the virus mutates such that an update to the vaccine is required to continue to confer protection against COVID-19, we believe that the flexibility of BioNTech’s proprietary mRNA vaccine platform is well suited to enable an adjustment to the vaccine.”

CNN reported the study hasn’t been peer-reviewed.

As of Friday, more than 88.4 million coronavirus cases and 1.9 million related deaths have been reported worldwide, the U.S. topping both categories with roughly 21.7 million cases and 367,000 deaths, according to a Johns Hopkins University tracker.

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