Pfizer/BioNTech’s Covid-19 vaccine, Comirnaty, has seen a phenomenal increase in its Q3 2021 forecast sales for 2022 and 2023 compared to its Q2 forecasts, with increases of 190% and 228% for 2022 and 2023 respectively, resulting in 2022 forecast sales of $28.4bn and 2023 forecast sales of $13.4bn. Comirnaty is currently the leading prophylactic vaccine for Covid-19 by forecast sales and is expected to generate an unprecedented $100bn in sales from 2020 to 2027, driven by large forecast sales from 2021–2024, according to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Sector Forecast: Q3 2021 Global Analyst Consensus Sales report.
Comirnaty was the first globally approved Covid-19 vaccine, approved by the UK’s Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) on 2 December 2020 by emergency use authorisation (EUA). It has since gone on to become the leading Covid-19 vaccine by sales and was recently granted full approval by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on 23 August. It currently remains significantly ahead of its main rivals, Moderna’s mRNA-1273, AstraZeneca’s Vaxzevria and Johnson & Johnson’s Covid-19 vaccine, by total forecast sales between 2020 and 2027. Only Moderna’s mRNA-1273 forecast sales approach the same level of sales, with forecast sales of $41.8bn between 2020 and 2027, which is still $60bn less than Comirnaty’s $100bn over the same period.
According to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Sector Forecast: Q3 2021 Global Analyst Consensus Sales report, the Q3 2021 forecast for Comirnaty saw its forecast sales for 2022 and 2023 increase by $18.7bn and $9.3bn respectively. Overall, Comirnaty’s Q3 2021 forecast has seen an average increase of 71% compared to its previous Q2 2021 forecast in June, and saw large increases in forecast sales in five out of the seven forecast years, as indicated in Figure 1. This increase has led to Comirnaty’s forecast sales between 2020 and 2027 almost doubling, from forecast sales of $55bn in the Q2 forecast to $100bn within the Q3 forecast.
The surge in forecast sales for Comirnaty, especially in 2022 and 2023, can be attributed to the predicted need for booster shots to maintain its efficacy, with studies having shown Comirnaty’s efficacy steadily declines to around 84% six months after the second dose. Pfizer/BioNTech submitted a supplemental Biologics License Application to the FDA on 26 August for the approval of a third dose of Comirnaty as a booster shot for people aged 16 years and older. The FDA’s Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee (VRBPAC) voted unanimously on 17 September to recommend the FDA grant EUA for a booster dose of Comirnaty for individuals aged 65 years and older and individuals at high risk of severe Covid-19.
The use of Comirnaty to include adolescents aged between 12 and 15 years within various geographies such as the EU, Japan, US and UK will expand the patient remit, contributing to driving up forecast sales. The possible future expansion of Comirnaty to children younger than 12 years is also predicted to be another major driver within the forecast sales for 2022 and 2023.
Comirnaty’s forecast sales have continued to increase in almost every quarterly update of its forecast, and with sales for the first half of 2021 at $19.57bn, it appears Comirnaty is on track to meet these potential forecasts so long as it maintains its title as the leading prophylactic vaccine for Covid-19.