Nov. 24 (UPI) -- A week after extremely promising news about two U.S. vaccines, developers of Russia's Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine said Tuesday it has shown an efficacy rate better than 91%.
Moscow's Gamaleya Center and the Russian Direct Investment Fund, which is developing the vaccine, said interim clinical data show it is about 91% efficient after 28 days and 95% after 42 days.
Researchers have studied the vaccine in close to 19,000 volunteers, who received both doses of the Sputnik V vaccine or a placebo. The information released Tuesday was the second set of interim third-stage data for the Sputnik V vaccine. The first set showed efficacy between 91% and 92%.
"The data demonstrating high efficacy of the Sputnik V vaccine give us hope that we will soon obtain the most important tool in the fight against the pandemic," Russian health minister Mikhail Murashko said in a statement.
The second analysis was conducted a week after volunteers received a second dose. Developers said they expect the efficacy rate will ultimately rise, based on the data.
"We plan to conduct the third interim data analysis after 78 confirmed coronavirus cases among volunteers and we have every reason to believe that the results will exceed our initial expectations," said Gamaleya Center Director Alexander Gintsburg.
Russian Direct Investment Fund CEO Kirill Dmitriev said results of the clinical trial will be published in a leading peer-reviewed medical journal.
Moscow announced the vaccine in August and it was met with an initial wave of skepticism in the scientific community, as it still had yet to go through late-stage testing.
The Russian Direct Investment Fund said the Sputnik V vaccine, at less than $10 per dose, will be less expensive than the U.S. vaccines.
Developers previously said they plan to produce 500 million doses of the vaccine per year, beginning next year.