We interrupt the gloom and doom forecasts about the pandemic you are bombarded with by every news outlet, except this one, to bring you something called “encouraging news.” It’s yet to be determined if it will actually happen, but you have to admire the boldness and confidence of billionaire scientist Ugur Sahin, the 55-year old CEO of BioNTech. He told the UK Guardian that he expects the COVID-19 vaccine his company collaborated with Pfizer to create will “bash the virus over the head” and ultimate end the pandemic.
“If the question is whether we can stop this pandemic with this vaccine, then my answer is: yes, because I believe that even protection only from symptomatic infections will have a dramatic effect,” Şahin told the paper.
The reason for his utmost confidence comes from the fact his vaccine attacks the virus on multiple levels. “The vaccine hinders COVID-19 from gaining access to our cells. But even if the virus manages to find a way in, then the T-cells bash it over the head and eliminate it. We have trained the immune system very well to perfect these two defensive moves. We now know that the virus can’t defend itself against these mechanisms.”
Sahin also said that he believes the vaccine would last for up to a year.
“We only have indirect clues so far [immunity duration]. Studies of COVID-19 patients have shown that those with a strong immune response still have that response after six months. I could imagine we could be safe for at least a year.”