Tuesday, January 18

Omicron variant: will Pfizer and Moderna change their vaccine?

After the Delta variant, the Omicron variant. Detected for the first time in South Africa on November 24, this new version of coronavirus is on everyone’s lips.

At a time when the third dose becomes generalized in France, one question stands out from the others: can the vaccine fight against Omicron? No official response has yet been provided. But the laboratories themselves feel they are already ready.

A specific vaccine?

Moderna assured that his teams were currently working on “a vaccine candidate for a booster dose specific to variant Omicron“. Stéphane Bancel, CEO of the laboratory, said in a press release that “it was imperative to be proactive in the face of the evolution of the virus”. Especially since, according to him, Moderna has “repeatedly demonstrated its ability to move new vaccine candidates to the stage of clinical trials in 60-90 days.”

On the side of Pfizer, work is also launched. The laboratory will first study Omicron, before determining whether this variant requires a specific vaccine. The first results of the analyzes are expected “at the latest in two weeks,” said a spokesperson for the group.

Professor Andrew Pollard, who coordinated the development of the AstraZeneca vaccine, was also confident: “the processes of developing a new vaccine are getting better and better,” he explained. BCC. A serum against Omicron could therefore be developed “very quickly”.

Premature adaptation?

But if the laboratories are carried away, other scientists recalled that we knew for the moment almost nothing of this new variant. For example, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) considered that it was “premature” to provide for an adaptation of the vaccines to Omicron.

The World Health Organization (WHO), which classified the variant as “worrying”, also recalled that it would take “several weeks” before understanding the level of transmissibility and virulence of Omicron.

(Thomas COEX / AFP)” width=”375″/>

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