According to a second interim review of clinical trial results, Russia's Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine is 95 percent successful, its developers said today.
The two-dose vaccine will be available for less than US$10 (RM40.8) per dose on the foreign markets, they said and will be free for Russian citizens.
It can be stored at two to eight degrees Celsius (between 35.6 and 46.4 degrees Fahrenheit) instead of the freezing temperatures needed for certain other vaccines, they said.
The calculations of its effectiveness were based on preliminary data obtained 42 days after the first dose, as stated in a statement by the Russian Ministry of Health, the state-run research center Gamaleya and the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF).
The statement confirmed that 28 days after the first dose, the vaccine had demonstrated 91.4 percent efficacy, a figure based on 39 cases.
Forty-two days later, after the second dose, the results showed "vaccine efficacy above 95 percent."
However, it did not mention the number of cases of coronavirus used to make the final estimate.
"The second analysis was performed a week after the second dose was received by volunteers, meaning that their bodies reacted partially to both doses," said Gamaleya's director, Alexander Ginsburg, in the release.
He said that three weeks after the second dose, "the center expects the efficacy rate to be even higher."
The statement said that with the first dose, 22,000 volunteers were vaccinated and more than 19,000 with both doses.
The vaccine is also being tested overseas in the United Arab Emirates, Venezuela, Belarus, and other countries.
Russia became the first nation to record a coronavirus vaccine in August but did so ahead of the already ongoing large-scale clinical trials.
President Vladimir Putin revealed last month that Russia had registered a second coronavirus vaccine, EpiVacCorona, as a global race is heating up to create an effective pandemic-fighting vaccine that has now claimed the lives of almost 1.4 million people.
Last week, Putin said Russia had manufacturing agreements with China and India in place and urged Brazil and South Africa to mass-produce Russian-made vaccines as well.
Pfizer and BioNTech, the pharmaceutical giants, announced that their virus vaccine is 95% effective, while Moderna, a US firm, said early testing last week showed that its candidate was 94.5% effective.