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with himCoronavirus becoming major strain in US, pharmaceutical giant Pfizer says it is working on . The new third shot will target the highly contagious delta mutation, which has spread to 100 countries and is responsible for a growing number of new infections in the US.
In a recent press release, Pfizer said a third shot of its vaccine would increase the immunity of people who have received the first two vaccine shots. In addition to making boosters for its existing vaccine, the drugmaker said it would prepare a new version of its COVID-19 vaccine to target the delta variant. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration responded with a joint statement that fully vaccinated Americans “do not need a booster shot at this time.”
Earlier this month, the CDC and the World Health OrganizationOn the need for fully immunized people to wear face masks. This debate, along with the ongoing discussion of booster shots, underscores how scientists and other health experts continue to grapple with the uncertainties of COVID-19 as restrictions are eased. Here’s what we know about Pfizer’s plans for a booster, and why the CDC and FDA caution against it, at least for now.
Why would Pfizer develop a COVID-19 booster shot?
As with Moderna, Pfizer’s current two-dose vaccine provides effective protection against all known forms of COVID-19 – including the delta version. Studies have shown that the Pfizer vaccine is more than 90% effective against the virus. So why is the drugmaker pushing for a booster shot?
Pfizer said its own research showed that the third booster of its current vaccine increased antibody levels five to 10 times more than the two-dose shots. The company noted that its results have not been published or peer-reviewed.
Pfizer said it believes the level of protection of two doses of its vaccine may decrease over time, and a third booster dose “within six to 12 months” after a person is fully vaccinated. may be required. As for the booster preparation, Pfizer is testing the effectiveness of the third dose of its current vaccine and is working on an updated version targeting the delta variant.
When will the clinical trial for the booster shot take place?
Pfizer said it would begin clinical trials on the booster in August as it seeks approval from government regulators for a third dose. The company says that a third shot given at least six months after the second shot in its original vaccine series will increase protection against the delta variant, which is known (also here) to infect fully vaccinated people.
What Are the CDC and FDA Saying in Response?
The CDC and FDA said in a joint statement without naming Pfizer, “Those who have been fully vaccinated are protected against serious illness and death, including the Delta-like variants currently operating in the country. ” Government agencies stressed the need for all eligible people to receive a full dose of one of the approved vaccines, all of which are free.
The CDC and FDA said the booster question requires extensive scientific data and does not rely solely on input from drug companies. “Virtually all COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths are among those who have not been vaccinated,” the statement noted, adding that agencies will approve booster doses “if more When science demonstrates they are needed.”
Will the booster shot be free?
The current one-dose vaccine from Johnson & Johnson and the two-dose versions of Moderna and Pfizer are free for anyone who wants to get the vaccine. If and when they are approved, COVID-19 booster shots will also be free, according to the Biden administration.
Is Moderna planning to develop a booster shot as well?
While scientists and public health officials continue to study whether and when fully vaccinated people will need a booster shot, Moderna said — along with Pfizer — it is moving forward and exploring the need for a third shot. is.
Is it a good idea to mix and match COVID vaccines?
The CDC does not recommend mixing and matching vaccines from different manufacturers, saying it has not evaluated the effectiveness of mixing vaccine doses and that “vaccines are not interchangeable.”
However, other global health agencies and countries are testing vaccines administered from two different manufacturers. For example, in England, a recent study found that people who received the first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine and the second dose of Pfizer had a greater immune response than those who received two doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine.
While we wait to see how the situation develops, here’s, more about and if you .
The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended to be health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.