Not enough data to recommend bivalent COVID vaccines, says WHO | Coronavirus

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Not enough data to recommend bivalent COVID vaccines, says WHO | Coronavirus

The currently available data are not sufficient to recommend booster doses containing bivalent variants, according to WHO experts.

There is not yet enough data to recommend COVID-19 vaccines that specifically target the Omicron variant over the original strains, World Health Organization (WHO) experts said on Tuesday. .

Four mRNA vaccines containing variants that include Omicron subvariants BA.1 or BA.4/5 in combination with the parent virus have been licensed for use. use as booster doses.

These vaccines matched to the dominant variant may offer little additional benefit, said the expert panel advising WHO on vaccination.

Currently available data are not sufficient to support making a recommendation in favor of booster doses containing bivalent variants compared to doses of vaccines based on the original virus, said the Strategic Advisory Group of x27;experts (SAGE) in a press release.

SAGE administrative secretary Joachim Hombach pointed out that experts found that bivalent vaccines showed slightly greater neutralization of the Omicron variant.

This is a relatively modest that we can see in the lab, he said. What we cannot do is associate these laboratory measures with an increase in protection, because the data that would demonstrate this increased effectiveness is not yet available.

“Since our recommendations have to be really evidence-based, we cannot make a statement in favor of these vaccines. »

— Doctor Joachim Hombach, Administrative Secretary of SAGE

These vaccines are very good, but what is much more important for the protection against COVID-19 is x27;is whether you get vaccinated – whether the product is modified for Omicron or not.

That's what is the game-changer, whether it is the first or the second recall, Dr. Hombach said.

The Omicron variant accounted for 99.9% of virus samples collected over the past 30 days, which were sequenced and uploaded to the GISAID global science initiative. Of these, the BA.5 group of Omicron subvariants remains overall dominant at 81%, followed by BA.4 at 8% and BA.2 at 3%.

As of October 2, more than 615 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 and more than 6.5 million deaths have been reported to WHO worldwide.

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