There may be good news on the horizon regarding a COVID-19 vaccine.
Pfizer and partner BioNTech reported that their trial vaccine appears to have a 90 percent efficacy rate, meaning that test subjects who received a vaccine experienced 90 percent fewer cases of symptomatic COVID-19 than those who received a placebo. Other trial vaccines are nearing the end of their clinical trials as well, so more news is expected.
Florida State University Professor Zucai Suo is available to comment on the development of a COVID-19 vaccine.
Zucai Suo, Eminent Professor and Dorian and John Blackmon Chair in Biomedical Science, Department of Biomedical Sciences
Suo is a professor in the Department of Biomedical Sciences, where he researches the enzymes involved in DNA replication, DNA damage repair, DNA lesion bypass, gene editing, virus replication and human innate immunity, and develops antiviral and anticancer therapies. He previously developed FDA-approved antiviral drugs as an industry researcher.
“This is extraordinarily good news for COVID-19 vaccine development, considering its better-than-expected high efficacy rate. If the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine still looks good during its ongoing late-stage clinical trial, it will be approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as one of the best weapons against COVID-19 and also validate a new biotechnology for rapidly developing vaccines against emerging viruses. However, some important questions, including efficacy and safety variation among different patient populations, duration of protection and potential protection against new COVID-19 strains with genetic mutations remain to be answered.”