Moderna can provide booster shots by the end of the year to protect against COVID-19 variants.
Reuters Moderna’s Chief Medical Officer Tal Zaks reports on Wednesday that the company should be able to provide booster shots by the end of 2021, adding that tests show the boosters provide some level of protection against coronavirus variants.
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The National Institutes of Health started to test a booster shot from Moderna against a variant first found in South Africa that has given scientists some cause for concern compared to other species.
The variant, B.1.351, appears to be more contagious than previous strains and could potentially evade some of the protection generated by therapeutics and vaccines, although preliminary evidence has shown that current vaccines provide a sufficient level of protection against variants.
“Out of an abundance of caution, NIAID has continued its collaboration with Moderna to evaluate this candidate variant should there be a need for an updated vaccine,” said Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). said last week.
Meanwhile, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the variant of the coronavirus originating in the UK, the B.1.1.7 variant, has become the dominant strain in the US. Experts believe the variant is more contagious and may be more deadly, but all three vaccines authorized in the US, including those from Moderna, have been shown to be effective against the strain.
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