Are pregnant women a big market for Pfizer and BioNTech’s vaccine?
Pfizer (NYSE: PFE) and BioNTech (NASDAQ: BNTX) recently started a clinical trial testing their coronavirus vaccine in pregnant women. While this subset of the market appears to be a minor addition to the vaccine’s potential, Fool.com contributors Brian Orelli and Keith Speights break down the clinical trial’s obvious benefits for companies in this video from Motley Fool Live, registered on Feb. 22.
Brian Orelli: Finally, Pfizer and BioNTech had two interesting events this week. They’re testing the vaccine on pregnant women in a clinical trial, and then they’ve submitted stability data to the FDA so that their vaccine can be stored at a negative temperature of 25 to minus 15 degrees Celsius, that is. basically your standard freezer. They showed it to be stable for two weeks at this temperature, so you wouldn’t need to put it on dry ice or in large negative freezers at 80 degrees. Which do you think has the most impact on sales, pregnant women or stability?
Keith Speights: Assuming all goes well, the ability to vaccinate pregnant women would likely be the biggest financial catalyst out there. I was trying to look, I was curious about this, how many women are pregnant at any given time in the United States, and the best data I could find was about 6 million pregnancies in the United States. . If you did the math on the back of the envelope, 6 million times two doses, say $ 20 a dose, that’s about $ 240 million of potential market in the United States. Obviously, Pfizer wouldn’t get all of that. But that’s not a trivial amount of a market to target. If you expand our horizons across the globe, the best data I could find I’m not sure how reliable it is, but around 148 million pregnancies at any given time around the world, so it’s a market much greater potential. Again, Pfizer would not be able to get that whole deal. But I think it’s a bigger financial opportunity.
I’m not sure how sales impact the new storage requirements. This is obviously good news for Pfizer, but I don’t think it will necessarily have an impact this year as they are already selling all the doses they can make. But maybe in the future it will give them a slight advantage. I think they’ll be coming out with more news probably later this year that will meet some of the ultra-cold storage requirements even more effectively. But choosing between the two, I would say the ability to vaccinate pregnant women is the biggest issue for Pfizer.
Orelli: Yes I would agree, although I think the storage is probably going to be useful to compete in the long run with Modern because I think it will give the possibility of doing the injections in pharmacies, which don’t necessarily have an 80 degree negative freezer but almost certainly have an ordinary normal freezer because they store other drugs that way. I think the stability for two weeks there will be enough time with good planning for pharmacies to give the Pfizer vaccine.
So in the long run I think it probably shouldn’t be underestimated on the ability to compete with Moderna having the ability to store in freezers.
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