Pfizer and BioNTech have started clinical trials for a vaccine that will fight against the Omicron variant.
Look, if it’s one thing Pfizer and BioNTech ain’t got time for is another COVID-19 variant mutating and making our stay in the house even longer. On Tuesday, the German biotechnology company and the American pharmaceutical and biotechnology company announced that they are coming back together for their next mission: to create a vaccine that will tackle the Omicron variant.
The first step they’ve taken is starting clinical trials to study the effectiveness of a vaccine created specifically for the Omicron strain, which has been shown to be harder to detect and spreads more readily than other variants.
According to the New York Post, the first group of participants includes about 615 people who have received two doses of the current Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine between 90 and 180 days after being a part of the study. They will receive one or two doses of the Omicron-focused vaccine as part of their participation.
The second group includes another 600 people who received three doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine before the study. They will receive a dose of either the current treatment or the Omicron-targeted shot. A third group will be given three doses of the Omicron-targeted vaccine.
“Vaccines continue to offer strong protection against severe disease caused by Omicron,” BioNTech CEO and co-founder Ugur Sahin said in a statement, the New York Post reports. “Yet, emerging data indicate vaccine-induced protection against infection and mild to moderate disease wanes more rapidly than was observed with prior strains.”