The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine needs to be kept at around -70 degrees Celsius (-94 degrees Fahrenheit) while it’s transported. That’s 50 degrees Celsius colder than any other vaccine currently used.
Moderna says its vaccine can be kept in freezers typically available in pharmacies, and in a refrigerator for 30 days. But there are likely to be fewer doses of the Moderna vaccine than of the Pfizer’s available over the next year. Pfizer’s storage temperature of -70 c. is 50 degrees colder than any other vaccine currently used. Phase 3 trials have shown both vaccines to be around 95% effective but the results haven’t yet been reviewed by regulators.
On Wednesday, the CEO of BioNTech, the German biotech company partnering with Pfizer, acknowledged the issue of temperature control.”We are working on formulation which could allow us to ship the vaccine even maybe at room temperature,” Ugur Sahin told CNN. “We believe that in the second half of 2021 we will have come up with a formulation which is comparable to any other type of vaccine.”