New COVID vaccine may be needed next year, BioNTech CEO says

BioNTech (BNTX) Chief Government Ugur Sahin says a brand new vaccine will most likely be wanted by the center of subsequent yr to battle off COVID variants.

“This yr [a new vaccine] is totally unneeded,” he advised the Monetary Instances. “However by mid-next yr, it may very well be a special state of affairs.”

BioNTech, Mainz, Germany, partnered with U.S. health-care titan Pfizer (PFE) on one of many three COVID vaccines used within the U.S. The opposite two are produced by Moderna (MRNA) and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ).

Present COVID mutations aren’t completely different sufficient from the unique to blunt the effectiveness of the vaccines already in use, Sahin mentioned. Booster pictures can do the trick for that.

However extra resistant variants will emerge. “This virus will keep, and the virus will additional adapt,” he mentioned.

“We have now no purpose to imagine that the following technology virus can be simpler to deal with for the immune system than the present technology. It is a steady evolution, and that evolution has simply began.”

BioNTech’s inventory not too long ago traded at $248.60 (U.S.), down 2.4 per cent. However it nonetheless has greater than doubled (up 114 per cent) over the previous six months amid robust demand for its vaccine.

In different COVID information, drug large Merck (MRK) mentioned Friday that it will search emergency-use approval from the Meals and Drug Administration for a COVID therapy tablet.

It mentioned the drug minimize the danger of hospitalization and dying in high-risk sufferers by as a lot as 50 per cent.

The drug, often known as molnupiravir, would provide an at-home therapy possibility for COVID sufferers.

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