Monday , January 18 2021

A new blow for the Chinese? The vaccine is much less effective than previously thought.



The vaccine against the new coronavirus, developed by the Chinese biopharmaceutical company Sinovac, has been shown to be 50.4% effective in clinical trials in Brazil. This means that the mentioned Chinese vaccine is much less effective than previous tests have shown, because with a little more than 50% efficiency it hardly meets the conditions for approval by the competent regulators.

Brazil, one of the most affected countries in the world in the covid-19 pandemic, is waiting for another Chinese vaccine against the new coronavirus, along with Sinovac. The aforementioned biotechnology company is behind a vaccine called CoronaVac that uses killed virus particles and exposes the immune system to the virus so there are no complications in responding to covid-19 disease. In addition to Brazil, the vaccine has been ordered by other countries, such as Indonesia, Turkey and Singapore.



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A vaccine with barely more than 50% efficiency

The Butantan Institute in Sao Paulo, where the aforementioned clinical trials of the vaccine were conducted, first reported last week that the affordable Sinovac vaccine is 78% effective in mild and severe cases of new coronavirus infections. However, they then announced yesterday that the aforementioned calculation did not take into account data on the effectiveness of the vaccine in very mild infections in people who received the vaccine and did not need hospital treatment.




In addition to Brazil, other countries, such as Indonesia, Turkey and Singapore, have ordered the Sinovac vaccine.


In addition to Brazil, other countries, such as Indonesia, Turkey and Singapore, have ordered the Sinovac vaccine.
Photo: Reuters

After taking these data into account, the effectiveness of the vaccine dropped to 50.4 percent. This means that the vaccine has barely exceeded the protection level of 50%, which is one of the conditions for approval by the competent regulators. However, experts from Brazil pointed out that the vaccine is 78% effective in preventing milder cases of infection and 100% effective in preventing the more serious course of covid-19 disease.

Clinical trials in other countries have yielded different results. Last month, Turkish experts said the vaccine was 91.25 per cent effective, while Indonesia said the vaccine offered 65.3 per cent protection. In both cases, these were the average results of the last phase of testing, reports the BBC. Indonesia is already preparing for an extraordinary approval of the Sinovac vaccine, and vaccination is expected to begin this week.



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Chinese vaccines are less effective than Western ones

Meanwhile, the international public is already facing criticism and concern that clinical trials of Chinese covid-19 vaccines are not subject to the same standards and levels of transparency as vaccines from Western manufacturers. It is worth mentioning that Chinese vaccines achieve a lower level of protection against covid-19 than vaccines from the West. Chinese manufacturer Sinopharm was 79% effective in tests in China and 86% in the UAE, while Pfizer and BioNtech and Moderna were 95% effective.

Chinese authorities have repeatedly assured that Chinese vaccines against the new coronavirus are safe and have no serious side effects. Sinopharm was approved in Beijing in late December as the first vaccine against covid-19, and in the final phase of clinical trials, three more Chinese companies have their own vaccines. The vaccine has already been approved in several other countries.



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