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FDA experts recommend updated booster shots to combat infectious Omicron variants in the fall

A committee of independent vaccine experts from the Food and Drug Administration recommended updating the Covid vaccine to combat the currently circulating Omicron strain, as the United States anticipates an outbreak of Covid this fall. The report states.

The FDA’s Vaccine and Related Bioproduct Advisory Board voted 19-2, recommending that vaccine manufacturers modify their shots to target the Omicron variant, which continues to evolve into a more contagious subvariant. ..

The FDA, which generally accepts the Commission’s recommendations, is expected to approve vaccine changes. The panel has not yet identified the omicron subvariants that vaccine manufacturers should target.

Vaccines developed by pharmaceutical majors such as Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson primarily target the first Covid strains that emerged in 2019. On the other hand, during the pandemic process, the virus rapidly evolved into many strains, including Omicron. The vaccine is less effective and the immune system is weakened.

Despite reports that millions have been fully vaccinated, Omicron caused a huge wave of infections in the country last winter.

Pfizer and Moderna later developed a vaccine against BA.1, the original version of the Omicron variant, which is no longer in circulation in the country. The more contagious Omicron subvariant BA.2 became predominant in the spring, and subvariants BA.4 and BA.5 are now in circulation and predominant.

Peter Markes, head of the FDA’s vaccine division, reportedly told the Commission this fall that booster campaigns need to be seriously considered. “We believe that the more compatible the vaccine is with the circulating strain, the more effective the vaccine will be and the more durable the defense will be,” he said.

Last week, Pfizer and BioNTech SE released positive data from the Phase 2/3 trial. This showed that booster vaccinations for Omicron-adapted vaccine candidates elicited a substantially higher immune response against Omicron BA.1 compared to the company’s current COVID. 19 vaccines. Pfizer reportedly stated that the vaccine was effective against BA.4 and BA.5 strains, but not as effective as BA.1.

Moderna recently unveiled new clinical data on its potential Omicron COVID booster. This elicited a strong neutralizing antibody response to the Omicron subvariants BA.4 and BA.5.

Data presented by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showed that three doses of the current vaccine are only 19% effective in preventing infection by Omicron in adults 150 days or more after administration. In addition, the third dose was 55% effective in preventing hospitalization for submutants in adults 120 days or more after vaccination.

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FDA experts recommend updated booster shots to combat infectious Omicron variants in the fall

Source link FDA experts recommend updated booster shots to combat infectious Omicron variants in the fall

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