BioNTech confident vaccine will work against new strain

However, further studies are needed to be completely sure, says chief executive

This video grab taken from a lifestream by German biotechnology company BioNTech during their press conference to provide an update on their COVID-19 vaccine. (L-R) Chief business and commercial officer Sean Marett, BioNTech co-founder and scientist Ozlem Tureci, CEO and BioNTech co-founder Ugur Sahin and CFO Sierk Poetting.

This video grab taken from a lifestream by German biotechnology company BioNTech during their press conference to provide an update on their COVID-19 vaccine. (L-R) Chief business and commercial officer Sean Marett, BioNTech co-founder and scientist Ozlem Tureci, CEO and BioNTech co-founder Ugur Sahin and CFO Sierk Poetting.

 

The chief executive of BioNTech has said the German pharmaceutical company is confident that its coronavirus vaccine works against the UK variant, but further studies are needed to be completely sure.

Ugur Sahin said on Tuesday that “we don’t know at the moment if our vaccine is also able to provide protection against this new variant”, but because the proteins on the variant are 99 per cent the same as the prevailing strains, BioNTech has “scientific confidence” in the vaccine.

Prof Sahin said BioNTech is currently conducting further studies and hopes to have certainty within the coming weeks.

“The likelihood that our vaccine works... is relatively high,” he said.

BioNTech’s vaccine, developed together with US pharmaceutical company Pfizer, is authorised for use in more than 45 countries including Britain, the United States and the European Union. – PA

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