There were tears of joy and celebration as employees were announced the interim results of Pfizer’s new coronavirus vaccine, the company’s chief scientist said.
Mikael Dolsten said his colleagues “screamed” with excitement when they were told that the pharmaceutical giant’s new surge could prevent Covid-19 from developing.
A preliminary analysis showed that the vaccine is more than 90% effective.
Mr Dolsten told BBC News Monday that he was with a handful of coworkers in the company’s Connecticut office in the United States when they received the update.
He said, “We were sitting, a handful of people, socially distant in masks. The video came on and the colleagues who were debriefing started updating us and you could hear everyone screaming, “Oh my god, that’s just amazing”.
Mr Dolsten said it “felt like a historic moment”. But he added that there were “more steps to take”.
“We feel we are on the verge of one of the greatest medical advances for society and humanity in 100 years that have passed,” he said.
“But we will work hard to make sure that the promise is kept and it was an amazing moment. I wish you could have been with me It was joy and tears all at once. “
The vaccine has been tested on 43,500 people in six countries and no safety concerns were raised.
Pfizer and its partner BioNTech plan to apply to the US Food and Drug Administration for an emergency license to use the vaccine by the end of the month.
Mr Dolsten said: “It’s a once in a lifetime experience for me and I’ve been part of many, many drugs and vaccines in my career. But nothing passes after you’ve seen this enormous suffering.”
He added, “We are winning this fight. I believe that today. “