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Low-dose COVID vaccine works for children under 6 years – CBS Pittsburgh

WASHINGTON (AP) – Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine is effective for infants and preschoolers announced by the company on Wednesday. If regulatorys agree, it could eventually be an opportunity to start vaccination of young children by the summer.

Moderna said it will ask US and European regulators to allow young people under the age of six to take two small shots in the coming weeks. The company also aims to allow large numbers of shots to older and teenage children in the United States.

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18 million children under the age of 5 across the country are the only age group not yet eligible for vaccination. Competitor Pfizer is currently offering child-sized doses for school-aged children and full-strength shots for children over the age of 12.

However, parents were disappointed with the frustration and confusion about which shots worked when, and were worried about the protection of young children. Pfizer is testing a smaller amount for children under the age of five, but when the two proved not strong enough, he needed to add a third shot to the study. These results are expected by early April.

“For the past two months, a small amount of vaccination has been a slightly moving goal,” said Dr. Bill Muller, a pediatric researcher at Northwestern University, in an interview before the company released its findings. .. “I think there is still an urgency to get it done as soon as possible.”

The younger the child, the lower the dose tested. According to Moderna, a quarter of the dose used for adults was effective for adolescents under the age of six.

Moderna enrolled approximately 6,900 tonnes in a 25 microgram dose study. In a press release, early data showed that after two shots, young adults developed antibody levels that fight the virus as powerful as normal-strength shots.

Moderna said small doses are safe and the main side effect is mild fever as associated with other commonly used pediatric vaccines.

When Moderna submits the data to the FDA, regulators will discuss whether to allow emergency use of small tots. If so, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will decide whether to recommend them.

COVID-19 is generally not as dangerous to young people as adults, but some people get seriously ill. According to the CDC, about 400 children under the age of five have died of COVID-19 since the pandemic began. The CDC found that the Omicron variant had a particularly severe impact on children, with children under the age of five being hospitalized at a higher rate than at the peak of previous delta surges.

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The COVID-19 vaccine generally not only fends off previous mutants, but also cannot prevent infection by the Omicron mutant, but it still provides strong protection against serious illness.

Moderna reported the same trend in a study of children under the age of 6 conducted during the Omicron surge. Although there were no serious illnesses, the vaccine proved to be less than 44% effective in preventing infections in infants up to the age of 2 and nearly 38% in preschoolers.

Modana also said on Wednesday that he would ask the Food and Drug Administration to clear more doses for older children.

Other countries have already allowed 6-year-old children to use Moderna shots, but the United States limits vaccines to adults. Moderna’s request to expand the shot to 12-17 years has been stagnant for several months.

The company said Wednesday that it was renewing its FDA application for teen shots, armed with additional evidence, and demanding a green light for children aged 6-11.

According to Moderna, the original adult dose (two shots of 100 micrograms) is safe and effective at ages 12-17. For elementary school students, we use half the dose for adults.

However, the FDA did not decide to apply Moderna to teenage shots because of concerns about very rare side effects. Inflammation of the heart can occur in teens and young adults (mainly men) after receiving either the Pfizer vaccine or the Moderna vaccine. Modena’s shots are much higher than Pfizer’s shots, so Modena is being scrutinized further.

Risk also appears to be associated with puberty, and regulators in Canada, Europe, and elsewhere have recently extended Moderna vaccination to children up to 6 years of age.

“That concern wasn’t seen by younger children,” said Muller of Northwestern University.

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(Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. Allrights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

Low-dose COVID vaccine works for children under 6 years – CBS Pittsburgh

Source link Low-dose COVID vaccine works for children under 6 years – CBS Pittsburgh

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