Moderna CEO says vaccine boosters and flu/Covid combo shots are likely for the future
Stéphane Bancel joined Becton Dickinson CEO Tom Polen and White House Vaccinations Coordinator Bechara Choucair in discussing the future of vaccines at the Forbes Health In Action Summit.
ForbesAs new variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus continue to spread around the world, vaccines produced by Moderna, BioNTech/Pfizer, and Johnson & Johnson won’t be enough to provide immunity forever, says Stéphane Bancel. Speaking at the Forbes Health In Action Summit, the Moderna CEO says it’s likely booster shots will be needed in the near future, both to bolster waning immunity and to protect against new virus mutations.
“First, immunity wanes with time meaning rollover of antibodies you have in your body from the vaccine - all natural infection goes down over time,” he says. “Two is you don’t know which virus you’re going to get infected with down the road, which variant is one of the four areas alpha, beta, gamma, delta, or even a new one that we don’t know of yet. And then it depends on your age and medical condition.”
To make future vaccine shots an easier process, Bancel says, the company is working on developing a booster shot to both reboot pre-existing antibodies as well as “provide new antibodies in your body that will bind specifically to those new mutations.” He also shared that Moderna is working on a booster for seasonal flu that operates with a 90-95% efficacy, and in the long run the company hopes to produce a shot where a single dose can vaccinate against both Covid-19 and the flu. headtopics.com
But while Moderna’s CEO looks at the future, the present still has a long way to go to get enough people vaccinated to reach herd immunity. Tom Polen, CEO and President of Becton, Dickinson and Company said his company received orders for over 2 billion syringes to assist with vaccine demand. “All of the syringes that we provide in the U.S., which are routinely used to deliver a variety of different vaccines and injectable therapies in hospitals, we make in the U.S. and always made in the U.S., so we work with the U.S. government to expand some of that capacity. For example, one of our manufacturing locations in Nebraska who work with the government to install new capacity that’s coming online right now just to scale that up even further to deliver vaccines,” Polen says.
The latest numbers from the CDC show 63.7% of adults have received at least their first dose of the vaccine in the U.S. As those numbers have grown, there has also been a recommendation for children over the age of 12 to receive the vaccine. “We know that the vaccines are highly effective, highly safe for kids, and we'd want to make sure that we're offering adolescents the protection that they need,” says Bechara Choucair, a medical doctor and White House Vaccinations Coordinator. This comes after the CDC reports that adolescents were being hospitalized for Covid-19 two to three times more often than for influenza.Read more: Forbes »
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when you get to boost level 100 you will grow wings and you will be freee... so boost ,boost ,boost i would say... If I know people that are going into comas from just the Covid vaccine than what is going to happen to them when its a combo vaccine of both Covid and the Flu? How surprising
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