FDA panel supports Johnson & Johnson booster vaccine for all adults

FDA panel supports Johnson & Johnson booster vaccine for all adults
·2 min read

The Food and Drug Administration's vaccine expert panel endorsed a booster shot for all adult recipients of Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine at least two months after the initial dose.

Similar to a decision on Thursday to approve a Moderna booster shot, the advisory committee noted a lack of data to support the decision but nonetheless decided to recommend an additional shot for Johnson & Johnson, which was previously touted for its ease as the sole option for a single-dose vaccine.

“Is there an option of saying it’s a little early? There are a number of issues that are still outstanding,” said Dr. Cody Meissner of Tufts University, a member of the FDA's National Vaccine Advisory Committee. “There are a lot of uncertainties, at this point, making it hard to vote for or against this tonight.”

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Johnson & Johnson requested an emergency authorization for the FDA to approve the booster shot for people 18 years and older. The company submitted data in September showing a booster shot administered two months after an initial vaccination resulted in a fourfold to sixfold increase in antibody levels compared with those produced by a single shot.

The inoculation remained a single-dose regimen — unlike the two-shot schedules offered by Pfizer and Moderna.

“I certainly agree with my colleagues that this does look more like a two-dose vaccine,” said Dr. Michael Nelson, a committee member. He added that the company's data were "a little bit immature and somewhat scant in multiple areas," according to CNBC.

Committee Chairman Arnold Monto said there was an urgency to approve the Johnson & Johnson vaccine for a booster due to the considerably lower efficacy when compared to the two-shot vaccines available.

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“There is a public health imperative here because what we’re seeing is this is a group with overall lower efficacy than we have seen with the mRNA vaccines, so there is some urgency to do something,” Monto said.

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Tags: News, Johnson & Johnson, Coronavirus, Vaccination, FDA

Original Author: Kaelan Deese

Original Location: FDA panel supports Johnson & Johnson booster vaccine for all adults

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