Here we go.
A new variant of the COVID virus identified in South Africa is “highly transmissible and vaccine-resistant.”
BioNTech/Pfizer on Friday said it will know its vaccine effectiveness against the new ‘Omicron’ variant within a couple weeks.
“We expect more data from the laboratory tests in two weeks at the latest. These data will provide more information about whether B.1.1.529 could be an escape variant that may require an adjustment of our vaccine if the variant spreads globally,” BioNTech said in a statement.
If the current Covid vaccine has to be reworked to protect against the new variant out of South Africa, Pfizer said it can have a new jab ready to be shipped within 100 days.
BioNTech SE (22UAy.DE) said on Friday it expects more data on a worrying new coronavirus variant detected in South Africa within two weeks to help determine whether its vaccine produced with partner Pfizer Inc (PFE.N) would have to be reworked.
Pfizer and BioNTech said that if necessary they expect to be able to ship a new vaccine tailored to the emerging variant in approximately 100 days.
“We understand the concern of experts and have immediately initiated investigations on variant B.1.1.529,” BioNTech said in a statement when asked to comment.
Moderna also released a statement on Friday and said it is working on a booster shot to protect against the ‘Omicron’ variant.