Covid-19: European regulator authorizes Pfizer and Moderna vaccines against Omicron

Published on: 01/09/2022 – 16:00 The European medicines regulator approved, on Thursday, the first vaccines against Covid-19 adapted to the Omicron variant, those from Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna, with a view to a campaign reminder this winter to prepare for a possible new wave. Green light for bivalent vaccines from Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) approved the first vaccines against Covid-19 adapted to the Omicron variant on Thursday, September 1, with a view to a recall campaign this winter to ward off a possible new wave. The vaccines “target the under -variant of Omicron BA.1 in addition to the original strain” of the coronavirus, which emerged in the Chinese city of Wuhan in 2019, the Amsterdam-based EMA said in a statement. They are intended for people aged 12 years and more who have received at least one primary vaccination against Covid-19. These vaccines are adapted versions of the original Comirnaty vaccines from Pfizer/BioNTech and Spikevax from Moderna. . The EMA recently said it was aiming for approval “as early as the fall” of Covid vaccines targeting these two sub-variants. Other vaccines targeting the BA.4 and BA.5 variants under review”D’ other suitable vaccines incorporating different variants, such as the Omicron BA.4 and BA.5 subvariants, are under review by the EMA or will be submitted soon and, if approved, will further expand the arsenal of available vaccines”, specified the EMA on Thursday.>> To read also: faced with the sub-variants of Omicron, the laboratories draw the bivalent vaccinesVaccines targeting the Omicron variant are eagerly awaited by European countries in order to be able to launch booster campaigns ahead of a feared resurgence in Covid-19 cases this winter.”The positive opinions issued today by the European Medicines Agency on the first two variant-tailored mRNA vaccines, from BioNTech-Pfizer and Moderna, are important to protect Europeans against the likely risk of e autumn and winter waves of contamination,” European Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides said in a statement. “We have to be prepared for another winter with Covid-19.” US health authorities already authorized Wednesday the new version of the Covid-19 vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna specifically targeting the BA.4 and BA lineages. 5 of the Omicron variant.”Generally mild side effects”EU member states are still using the same coronavirus vaccines approved two years ago for use against the original strain of the virus. They offer some protection against Omicron and its subvariants, which are less harmful but more contagious than the original strain, but the world is waiting for more targeted and effective vaccines, fearing a new wave this winter.Omicron and its subvariants variants have been dominant throughout 2022, quickly taking the place of previous Alpha and Delta variants. The BA.4 and BA.5 subvariants are notably responsible for a wave of new cases in Europe and the United States in recent months. All Omicron variants tend to have a milder course of disease because they settle less in the lungs and more in the upper nasal passages, causing symptoms such as fever, fatigue and loss of smell. The EMA said its review of tailored vaccines Pfizer and Moderna focused on data from laboratory studies and tests on the immune response against the original strain and against the Omicron variant. “The side effects observed with the adapted vaccines are comparable to those observed with the original vaccines and are generally mild and of short duration”, underlined the agency. With AFP