On Friday, Pfizer Inc announced that the company’s experimental antiviral pill used for treatment against COVID-19 slashed the risk of hospitalization or death by the disease by 89%. The CEO of Pfizer, Albert Bourla vowed to make this miracle weapon available globally as quickly as possible. “Our goal is that everyone in the world would be able to have it as quickly as possible.”
The trial results for the new drug suggest that it’s better than Merck & Co Inc’s pill, molnupiravir which demonstrated that it could reduce the chance of dying and being hospitalized by half. But now, Pfizer’s pill called Paxlovid ensures better results and it could secure U.S regulatory approval as soon as the end of this year. Pfizer plans to submit the interim trial results to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) before 25th November which is Thanksgiving holiday. The trial ended quickly because of it’s high success rate and hopefully will be made public in a year or so.
President Joe Biden also announced that the U.S government had secured millions of doses of Pfizer’s drug. “If authorized by the FDA we may soon have pills that treat the virus in those who become infected,” Biden said. “The therapy would be another tool in our toolbox to protect people from the worst outcomes of COVID.”
After this new ground-breaking news, shares in Pfizer also rose 11% to close to $48. 61 while Merck’s fell to 10% to close at $81.61. Shares of other vaccine makers also took a hit, with Moderna Inc, Pfizer’s German partner BioNTech SE and Novavax all down 11-21%.
Paxlovid is given in combination with an older antiviral called ritonavir. The treatment consists of three pills which are given twice daily. This Pfizer drug has been in development for nearly two years and now it’s time to bring it to the public with promising results.