Nigeria: Meet the Nigerian Doctor Who Helped Pfizer Develop Covid-19 Vaccine

Pfizer World Headquarters in New York City.
24 November 2020

Leading Pfizer's research into a COVID-19 vaccine is Nigerian-born Onyema Ogbuagu.

An infectious diseases expert, Ogbuagu is an associate professor of medicine in the clinician-educator track and director of the HIV clinical trials programme of the Yale AIDS programme at the Yale School of Medicine.

The search for a vaccine for COVID-19 is still on.

But the team he leads at Pfizer has announced the first vaccine they developed is up to 90% efficacious.

The threshold is 50%.

It has been tested on 43,500 people in six countries, and no safety concerns have been raised.

On Monday the US Mission in Nigeria celebrated Ogbuagu in a tweet.

"Nigerians contribute to the world in so many ways. Our hats off to Dr. Onyema Ogbuagu at Yale who helped develop a COVID-19 vaccine!" it tweeted.

Nigerians contribute to the world in so many ways. Our hats off to Dr. Onyema Ogbuagu at Yale who helped develop a COVID-19 vaccine! pic.twitter.com/DYFWHlJSFM

-- U.S. Mission Nigeria (@USinNigeria) November 23, 2020

Ogbuagu is one of the twin sons of Chibuzo Ogbuagu, a former vice-chancellor of Abia State University, and Stella Ogbuagu, a professor of sociology who was best graduating student of the 1974 class at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN).

His twin brother is an engineer.

He studied medicine at the University of Calabar, Cross River state, in 2003. After graduation, he interned at the Ebonyi State University Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki, before proceeding to the US.

He is Yale principal investigator on multiple investigational therapeutic and preventative clinical trials for COVID-19, including remdesivir (now FDA approved), leronlimab and remdesivir and tocilizumab combination therapy, as well as the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine trial.

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