RUSSIA on Tuesday said its COVID-19 vaccine candidate Sputnik V has an efficacy over 95 per cent.
It added that it would cost less than $10 a dose in international markets.
The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) announced the price tag for its near-ready vaccine around the same time British vaccine creators from Oxford University and AstraZeneca said their version was 70 percent effective, up to 90 per cent if dosages are adjusted, The Washington Post reported.
The Sputnik V vaccine candidate, named after Russia’s first satellite, became the first vaccine in the world to be registered in August.
Russia’s decision was controversial as the vaccine had not been thoroughly tested at the time, though the candidate is now undergoing Phase 3 testing with around 40,000 volunteer participants.
Last week, American vaccine maker Pfizer – which has an efficacy of over 95 percent – filed for Emergency Use Authorisation (EUA) from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and a similar viable candidate from Moderna is slated to be submitted for approval next month.
RDIF said the vaccine would be free for Russians, and the rollout of dosages would start in 2021. For anyone outside the country, the two-shot dose will cost around $20.
Russian officials also claimed its vaccine candidate has greater efficacy than the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine due to the country’s proprietary technology, which it offered to share with British vaccine developers.
Production of the Sputnik V vaccine will commence in Hungary, Brazil, South Korea, India and China.
25 N0V 2020 @17:16 GMT