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Home / World / China’s Sinovac vaccine test results are far less effective than Brazil initially claimed

China’s Sinovac vaccine test results are far less effective than Brazil initially claimed



Analysts said the effectiveness of Sinovac’s Coronavac vaccine Brazil (the lowest ranking among its global competitors) may affect the international community’s confidence in China-made vaccines and prevent Beijing from repairing its image by providing Covid-19 vaccines to developing countries and early mishandling of the initial outbreak.

“The Batantan Institute and the Government of Sao Paulo reported that in clinical studies conducted in Brazil, the overall effectiveness of the coronavirus vaccine was 50.38%, 78% for mild cases, and 100% for moderate and mild cases. Severe Covid -19 cases. All rates are higher than the 50% level required by the WHO (World Health Organization).”

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Given that the razor approved by the regulatory agency is weak, the Butantan Institute released some “clinical efficacy” results last week, saying that its effectiveness in preventing infections reached 78% to 100%, which may cause scientists’ attention.

The state agency funded the third phase of the vaccine trial, which involved 13,000 health workers in eight Brazilian states.

At a press conference in Sao Paulo, Brazil on November 19, 2020, Sao Paulo Governor Joao Doria holds a box of Sinovac's Coronavac vaccine.

Ricardo Palacios, Director of Clinical Research Medicine at the Bataan Biomedical Center in Sao Paulo, said at a press conference on Tuesday: “In terms of the overall efficacy of the analysis, we have met the requirements of the World Health Organization to achieve 50.38%.”

However, on Tuesday, a senior member of the Brazilian Ministry of Health told CNN Brasil, a subsidiary of CNN, that “effectiveness is the tipping point” because “this is the limit. We have to wait for the approval of the Brazilian Health Surveillance Agency (ANVISA)” evaluation. ”

Representatives of Sinovac said that the company is discussing the results but declined to comment further. The representative said that the ultimate effectiveness of the vaccine will be determined by the State Administration of Pharmaceuticals, the Chinese drug regulatory agency.

Potential stumbling block

Huang Yanzhong (transliteration), a senior researcher for global health at the US Council on Foreign Relations, described the 50.38% efficacy of the Sinovac vaccine as a “disappointing result,” which surprised him.

The results show that Coronavac is not as effective as the alternative vaccines developed by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna, which has an efficiency of about 95%.

Russia said its satellite V vaccine has an effective rate of 91%, while the average efficiency of the British vaccine developed by Oxford University and AstraZeneca is 70%.

The Sinovac vaccine is also less effective than a domestic Chinese competitor developed by the state-owned Sinopharm Group, which has an effective rate of 79.34%.

Although the results were worse than expected, Huang said that given its higher efficacy for moderate and severe cases requiring medical treatment, the Sinovac vaccine will still be “available” by helping to relieve pressure on the medical system while reducing potential deaths.

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Huang said, however, its overall low efficiency may hinder Sinovac’s ability to expand its global market share.

Sinovac has signed an agreement to provide 46 million doses of Covid-19 vaccine to Brazil, 50 million doses to Turkey, and 7.5 million doses to Hong Kong. It will also provide Indonesia with 40 million doses of bulk vaccine (before the vaccine concentrate is divided into vials) for local production in Indonesia.

Huang said: “Since many countries plan to order or have ordered Sinovac vaccines, this may hurt people’s willingness to buy, because people may question the practicality of the vaccine.” “This may be a potential stumbling block.”

Lack of transparency

Lack of transparency has always been the main problem that has enveloped vaccines made in China, and Chinese President Xi Jinping promised to make them a “global public good.”

Both Sinovac and Sinopharm are facing issues related to data release. State-owned Sinopharm did not provide detailed information on its clinical trial data when announcing its efficacy results. An executive of Sinopharm said that detailed data will be released later and published in scientific journals without giving a timetable.

There are also differences in the results of clinical trials conducted in different places.

Earlier last year, Chinese drugmakers eliminated the coronavirus in their territory to a large extent, and had to go abroad to find places where they can test the efficacy of their vaccines. But the results reported so far are not consistent.

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For example, the efficacy rate of Sinopharm Group is 79%, which is lower than the 86% efficacy of the same vaccine announced in December by the United Arab Emirates.

Sinovac’s vaccine has produced very different results in three countries: Indonesia’s drug regulatory agency said that interim data from the phase 3 trial showed that the vaccine has an effective rate of 65.3%, which is the country’s first emergency use approval. Turkey claims that its effective rate is 91.25%; in Brazil, two significantly different treatment efficiencies announced a week apart have further raised questions.

Last week, the Brazilian health regulator ANVISA told the Butantan Institute that in order to approve the emergency use of vaccines, the global efficiency must be publicly available-according to the information at the time, the institute had not yet received information from Sinovac. CNN Brazil resources.

ANVISA will meet on Sunday to decide on the emergency use of Coronavac vaccine and Oxford University’s AstraZeneca vaccine.

Domestic expectations

Huang warned that the news may also hinder China’s own coronavirus vaccination.

Since July, under the emergency use plan approved by the government, China has vaccinated thousands of people with Sinovac vaccine, including at least three Chinese candidate vaccines.

In an emergency, the organization managed a total of 4.5 million doses of coronavirus vaccine and plans to vaccinate 50 million people before the Lunar New Year celebrations in February.

Huang said that Chinese public health experts have repeatedly told the public that they believe that Chinese-made vaccines are at least better than foreign alternatives, or even better.

“If people understand this, they may start to doubt the safety and effectiveness of the Sinovac vaccine or even other vaccines made in China,” Huang said. “I think the government will need to do some convincing work for people who have already taken or are about to take action.”


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