Pfizer Study Suggests That Booster Shot Given 6 To 12 Months Later Is Likely Provide Best Protection Against COVID-19

Pfizer and BioNTech have presented preliminary findings from a trial on booster shot for its COVID-19 vaccine, claiming that neutralization titers are five to ten times greater after a third dosage given around six months after the second shot than after two primary doses.

The businesses stated that they plan to provide “more conclusive data” soon and submit it to the FDA “in the next weeks.”

Real-world research from Israel, according to Pfizer, revealed a drop in effectiveness six months after patients were completely vaccinated.

“While protection against severe disease remained high over the course of the study, the observed decline in efficacy against symptomatic disease over time, as well as the continued emergence of variants, are key factors driving our belief that a booster dose will likely be required to maintain highest levels of protection,” Pfizer said in a statement.

The Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a joint statement Thursday evening putting a stop to the necessity for a booster injection and urging individuals to be vaccinated in general. Currently, less than half of the population in the United States is completely vaccinated.

“At this time, Americans who have been properly vaccinated do not require a booster injection,” the agencies said in a joint statement. “The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) are working together on a science-based, rigorous approach to determine whether or not a booster is warranted.”

In addition, the firms are developing materials in order to test a novel vaccine design based on the delta version, with clinical trials set to begin in August.

“While we believe the third dose of BNT162b2 has the potential to maintain the highest levels of protective efficacy against all currently known variants, including Delta,” the companies say. “We are remaining vigilant and are developing an updated version of the Pfizer-COVID-19 vaccine that uses a new construct based on the B.1.617.2 lineage, first identified in India and also known as the Delta variant.”

Pfizer and BioNTech said, “The firms are currently generating clinical trial material and anticipate commencing clinical investigations in August, subject to regulatory clearances.”

Moderna, the only other approved mRNA vaccine in the United States, has previously made similar comments regarding the necessity for booster injections.

“We expect the infection will not go away,” Moderna CEO Stephane Bancel said during a first-quarter results call to investors in early May.

The FDA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will decide whether and when booster injections are permitted, recommended, and made available.

Dr. Dan Barouch, director of the Center for Virology and Vaccine Research at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, told ABC News in late May, “Clearly, the pharmaceutical firms have an economic interest, particularly those that have vaccines that are for profit.” “We want the choice to be made entirely on the basis of public health, not on the basis of corporate economic interests.”

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