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Sanofi reports positive Covid vaccine results after delays

By AFP
23 February 2022   |   12:51 pm
French pharmaceuticals giant Sanofi said Wednesday that its Covid-19 vaccine, developed with Britain's GSK, had delivered positive results after nearly a year of delays left it lagging far behind rivals in the race for a jab.

(FILES) This file photo taken on November 23, 2020 shows a bottle reading “Vaccine Covid-19” next to French biopharmaceutical company Sanofi logo. – The French pharmaceutical giant Sanofi announced on February 23, 2022 positive results on a large scale for its anti-Covid vaccine, developed with the British company GSK, a project that is coming to fruition after nearly a year of delays. (Photo by JOEL SAGET / AFP)

French pharmaceuticals giant Sanofi said Wednesday that its Covid-19 vaccine, developed with Britain’s GSK, had delivered positive results after nearly a year of delays left it lagging far behind rivals in the race for a jab.

The two drugmakers said in a statement they will “seek regulatory authorisation” for their vaccine in the United States and the European Union following phase 3 trials involving thousands of people.

The trials — which have not yet been released — indicated that the vaccine was 100 percent effective against severe Covid disease and hospitalisations, Sanofi said.

It was also more than 50 percent effective against all symptomatic Covid, it added.

The results put the jab “in line with expected vaccine effectiveness in today’s environment dominated by variants of concern”, such as Omicron.

If the vaccine receives authorisation, it will mark the end of Sanofi’s long struggle to develop a Covid vaccine following numerous setbacks and delays.

The French firm had originally hoped to make a vaccine available by mid-2021.

But the date was pushed back by six months due to a dosing error, then was again delayed after difficulties finding uninfected people to take the trials.

Sanofi also abandoned a previous vaccine project based on the mRNA technology used by its rivals Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna, which have formed the backbone of vaccination efforts in many Western countries.

It is now focused on a vaccine using a slightly less innovative technique based on recombinant protein technology, also seen in the Novavax jab.

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