Two developers of the COVID-19 vaccine — Pfizer and BioNTech — said recently that they will have a COVID-19 vaccine ready for approval by October. But that might be optimistic.

What’s going on?

BioNTech CEO and co-founder Ugur Sahin told CNN Tuesday that the vaccine will be ready near late October or the beginning of November — just around Election Day, for those keeping score.

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The companies did not say which countries they plan to seek review in, according to MarketWatch.

  • “It has an excellent profile and I consider this vaccine ... near perfect, and which has a near perfect profile,” Sahin said.
  • “We don’t see frequent fever. So only a minor proportion of participants in this trial have fever,” Sahin said. “We see also much lower symptoms like headache or like feeling tired. And the symptoms that are observed with such vaccines are temporary, they are usually observed for one or two days and then are gone.”
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By the numbers:

Pfizer and BioNTech said they could provide:

  • 100 million doses of their vaccine by end of 2020
  • 1.3 billion by 2021

Yes, but ...

A federal official told CNN there are still unknowns for the vaccine.

  • “I don’t know any scientist involved in this effort who thinks we will be getting shots into arms any time before Election Day,” an unnamed official told CNN.