European regulator could OK 1st COVID-19 vaccine on Dec. 29

BERLIN (AP) — European regulators say they may approve a coronavirus vaccine developed by drugmakers Pfizer and BioNTech within four weeks. That time frame, while sped up, could mean the shot is rolled out first in the United States and Britain. The European Medicines Agency said Tuesday it plans to convene a meeting by Dec. 29 to decide if there is enough safety and efficacy data about the vaccine for it to be approved, the regulator said. The agency also said it could decide as early as Jan. 12 whether to approve a rival vaccine developed by Moderna Inc. The German pharmaceutical company BioNTech and its U.S. partner Pfizer have said that clinical trials showed their vaccine is 95% effective.