Biden Will Promote Boosters at 6 Months — Not 8, Report Says
President Joe Biden’s administration is planning to issue updated guidance recommending a third dose of Pfizer or Moderna’s vaccine be given to Americans six months after their second dose instead of eight months, according to The Wall Street Journal, as most vaccinated Americans say they’re ready for the next shot …
Unraveling the Mystery of Why Children Are Better Protected from COVID Than Adults
The immune system uses a special mechanism to protect children from novel viruses — and it typically saves them from a severe course of COVID-19 in two different ways.
The immune system in the mucous membranes of their airways is much more active than that of adults. And in children, this system reacts much faster to viruses that it has never encountered, such as pandemic pathogens. At least, that is what a recent study by Irina Lehmann of the Berlin Institute of Health at Charité and her colleagues suggests.
Pfizer/BioNTech Request Full FDA Approval of COVID-19 Booster Vaccine
Pfizer/BioNTech have initiated an application for full FDA approval of its COVID-19 vaccine booster shot for individuals aged 16 and up, the companies announced Wednesday, noting plans to complete the application later this week.
The request for the so-called supplemental biologics license application draws on Phase 3 clinical trial data among 306 participants aged 18 to 55 who received a third dose between 4.8-8 months following the initial two-dose series, with some 2.6 months of follow-up. The companies said levels of neutralizing antibodies were 3.3 times higher following the third dose, versus the second dose.
Kids 12 and up Can Get Free Limited Edition Copy of the Avengers at Three SOMOS Community Care Vaccination Sites
New York City kids ages 12 and up can get a free limited edition issue of Marvel’s The Avengers comic book if they get a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at three Somos Community Care vaccination sites, Mayor Bill de Blasio said Wednesday.
“Captain America started out as a skinny kid from Brooklyn…you too can become a superhero if you get vaccinated,” Mayor Bill de Blasio joked during a press conference at Staten Island’s Borough Hall. “It makes you strong…it makes you able to fight back against evil, it makes you able to take on COVID.”
“COVID is like Thanos out to hurt millions of people around the globe,” de Blasio continued. In the Marvel comic book universe, Thanos is a warlord from the fictional planet Titan whose sole goal in life is to decimate the populations of different planets to save the universe from becoming overcrowded and succumbing to the sad fate of his own.
‘I’m Still Not Planning To Get It’: FDA Approval Not Swaying Some Vaccine Holdouts
For five months, Chris Brummett has ignored his wife’s pleas that he get a coronavirus vaccine. He cares even less that federal regulators finally issued a long-awaited approval for one of them.
“My wife is on me all the time to do it,” said Brummett, 43, from Jackson County, Ind., who followed news this week of the Food and Drug Administration’s approval of Pfizer-BioNTech’s coronavirus vaccine. But Brummett, a libertarian critical of both the Biden and Trump administrations, said he’s struggling to trust any government messages about the virus. “I guess for now it’s a no for me.”
Tyler McCann, 24, of Augusta, Ga., also remains a skeptic, citing the low risk of complications for people his age. “If I get it,” McCann says of COVID-19, “I will blame myself entirely. It’ll be my fault. But until then … I don’t see the necessity, and with how politicized it’s been, I’m just annoyed with it.”
UK’s NHS Planning COVID Vaccines for Children From Age 12, Reports Say
NHS England has been told to prepare to administer COVID vaccinations to all children aged 12 and above, as vaccine advisers continue to consider whether to extend the programme, according to reports.
The planned extension to the vaccination programme would coincide with the start of the new school year. NHS trusts have been told to have plans prepared by 4pm on Friday, the Daily Telegraph reported.
Children aged 12-15 in the UK are currently offered coronavirus vaccines only if they have certain health conditions or live with vulnerable people, but distribution of the vaccines has already been extended to that age group by countries such as the U.S., Germany and Israel.
New WHO Group Aims to Improve Efforts to Find Pathogen Origins
This week, U.S. intelligence agencies delivered their highly anticipated assessment of the competing origin theories for SARS-CoV-2 to President Joe Biden, and media reports say it is inconclusive. Some unclassified details from the analysis may emerge this week, but the question of how exactly SARS-CoV-2 first infected humans remains a topic with a lot of speculation and few data …
Now, WHO is forming a Scientific Advisory Group for the Origins of Novel Pathogens (SAGO). Its broad remit is to examine the emergence of any pathogens, but one of its jobs will be to take the reins of WHO’s effort to pinpoint the origins of COVID-19. ScienceInsider spoke about SAGO with Maria Van Kerkhove, technical lead for COVID-19 at WHO, which is now seeking nominations for the group. We have edited the interview for brevity and clarity.
Japan halts 1.6 million doses of the Moderna vaccine over contamination worries.
The Japanese health authorities on Thursday announced that they would halt the use of over 1.6 million doses of Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine after some vaccination sites reported finding tainted vials.
The problem comes as Japan, which initially struggled to get its vaccination program into full gear, confronts its worst wave of COVID-19 cases since the pandemic began, raising concerns that medical systems in some parts of the country could be overwhelmed.
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