UK becomes the first country to approve a dual Covid vaccine targeting omicron

Britain has become the first country in the world to approve Moderna’s bivalent Covid-19 vaccine, which targets both the original strain of the virus and the new Omicron variant.

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LONDON – Britain on Monday became the first country in the world to approve a dual Covid-19 vaccine, which treats both the original virus and the new Omicron variant.

Updated Modern The vaccine – known as ambidextrous because it targets two types – is expected to be available to adults as a booster jab from the autumn after getting the go-ahead from the UK’s Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency on Monday.

It was also approved by the British government’s independent scientific advisory body, the Commission on Human Medicines.

The MHRA said that while existing vaccines – which are designed to fight the original strain of Covid – continue to provide good protection, enhanced versions will provide better protection as the virus evolves.

“The first generation of Covid-19 vaccines used in the UK are providing significant protection against the disease and saving lives. This bivalent vaccine is a sharp tool in our arsenal as it will help protect us against the disease while the virus is still in development,” Dr. Jun Ren, Chief Executive of MHRA said.

Greater protection against forms

The Human Medicines Commission added that the approval is a step forward for vaccine development, especially for viruses with high levels of mutation.

“The virus, SARS-CoV-2, continues to evolve to avoid the immunity provided by vaccines. This novel bivalent vaccine represents the next step in the development of vaccines to combat the virus, with its ability to induce a broader immune response than the original vaccine.”

The approval follows clinical trials, in which a booster with Moderna’s bivalent vaccine was shown to trigger strong immune responses against both the original 2020 strain as well as Omicron BA.1, which emerged in the UK last winter.

This bivalent vaccine has an important role to play in protecting people in the UK from Covid-19 as we enter winter.

Stephen Bansell

CEO, Moderna

Omicron was also found to induce a good immune response against subtypes BA.4 and BA.5, which are currently the dominant strains in the country.

The following Publication of its findings in JuneModerna’s chief executive Stefan Bansel said he hoped the new iteration would be a “leading candidate for a fall 2022 booster”.

“This bivalent vaccine has an important role to play in protecting people in the UK from Covid-19 as we enter the winter months,” Bancel added in a statement on Monday.

The UK government has not yet announced exactly who will receive the vaccine, however people aged over 50 and in high-risk groups in the UK will be offered some form of booster from next month.

The government reduced the age limit for those eligible Autumn booster in JulyAfter the continuous spread of the virus.

Vaccines are considered the most effective way to reduce the spread and severity of the virus. Research in the medical journal The Lancet predicted Covid-19 vaccines in June Nearly 20 million deaths prevented In their first year of use.

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