The stock price of Johnson & Johnson (J&J) fell after the company revealed its coronavirus vaccine. Its 66 percent efficacy rate is lower than Pfizer and Moderna, which has an efficacy rate of up to 95 percent.
People were hoping that the J&J vaccine would be as effective as the other two vaccines. But, since the company announced results, investors were disappointed, and the share value of the company tumbled while the stock prices of Moderna and Pfizer rose.
Even though the J&J vaccine’s efficacy rate is low, many experts see it as an excellent addition to the fight against the coronavirus pandemic. Kizzmekia Corbett, a scientist, involved in developing the Moderna vaccine, noted that J&J’s option looks “darn good” after a new trial showed 72 percent efficacy for the one-shot vaccine.
She warned people to not “let the perfect get in the way of the good enough.” Dr. Anthony Fauci, the chief medical advisor to Biden, called the J&J vaccine “good news.” Dr. Jennifer Dillaha, with the Arkansas Department of Health, pointed out that the approval of the J&J vaccine would mean that more people in Arkansas can get vaccinated.
“The FDA has said that the minimum efficacy of a vaccine must be 50 percent, and this one is well over that. We are looking forward to the possibility of having a third vaccine available to us… With a combination of the doses from the different vaccines, we can vaccinate many more people than just one or two vaccines… We are very pleased with the idea that we could get a third vaccine made available to us,” she said to KATV. To make the vaccine available in the market, J&J has to apply for emergency use to the FDA.
The 66 percent efficacy rate for J&J was from a trial conducted in Latin America, while the 72 percent efficacy rate was conducted in the United States. Another trial conducted in South Africa showed a 57 percent efficacy rate.
However, the J&J vaccine has shown an efficacy rate of 80 percent in all countries where specialists conducted trials, making it suitable for developing nations when it comes to preventing severe infections. Also, the J&J vaccine does not have the strict temperature requirements of Moderna or Pfizer, making storage and transportation more manageable and cheaper.
Dr. Mathai Mammen, global head of pharmaceutical research and development for Johnson & Johnson, is happy with the vaccine his company has presented to the market. “There’s no question that this vaccine is going to be a game-changer. The real-world effectiveness of this vaccine is apt to be very high. What we mean by severe COVID is feeling particularly sick at home. That’s about 80 percent of the severe cases. Or, in some cases, being sick enough to seek medical attention. We had 85 percent efficacy against serious COVID disease. And that’s meaningful because there’s a variant in South Africa that’s particularly problematic. So that makes me rest easier,” he said to CBS News.
Stock expert Jeff Marks notes that the J&J vaccine is good enough when there is a need to get vaccines to many people as fast as possible. He advises investors to use the weakness in price as a buying opportunity since the company’s fundamentals are solid.