Ad5-nCoV, CanSino Biologics Inc
Vials of a recombinant adenovirus vaccine named Ad5-nCoV, developed by Chinese biopharmaceutical firm CanSino Biologics Inc. Image Credit: Reuters

Islamabad: The coronavirus vaccine developed by China’s CanSino Biologics Inc (CanSinoBIO) showed 74.8 per cent efficacy in limiting symptomatic cases and a 100 per cent success rate in preventing severe disease among Pakistanis, the trial results revealed.

The final stage trial included 30,000 participants. The vaccine exceeds the 50 per cent efficacy threshold set by the World Health Organisation. The global interim analysis, however, indicated that the vaccine efficacy at preventing symptomatic cases was 65.7 per cent and 90.98 per cent in severe disease case, Pakistan’s health advisor Dr Faisal Sultan said.

CanSino is one of the only two one-dose vaccines in the world to release its phase III data. The other one-shot vaccine is Johnson & Johnson which is 66 per cent effective overall in protecting against COVID-19. The single-dose vaccines are considered more effective for mass vaccination in developing countries where it might be hard to convince people to show up for the second shot.

Pakistan health officials earlier confirmed that the country would get 20 million doses of CanSino if the vaccine proved to be effective. The CanSinoBIO vaccine, Ad5-nCoV, is being tested in Pakistan, Mexico, Russia, Argentina and Chile. Sinopharm, Sinovac and CanSino are the three major Chinese coronavirus vaccines.

Pakistan, a country of 220 million people, began its vaccination drives against the novel coronavirus on February 3 after receiving 500,000 doses of Sinopharm vaccine. Frontline health workers are first in line to receive the jab. Meanwhile, Pakistan’s Sindh province is expected to order an additional dose of 20 million vaccine doses from China to fulfil the province’s requirement.

Pakistan on Tuesday approved Russia’s Sputnik-V COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use after China’s Sinopharm and the AstraZeneca vaccine.