U.S. Officials Press Pfizer for More Evidence of Needing a Boost Shot


“Americans with full vaccinations do not need a booster vaccine at this time,” the statement said. “We are ready for booster doses whenever and if science shows it is necessary.”

The move could make good business sense for Pfizer-BioNTech. Since the beginning of the pandemic, partner companies Followed a “first to market” strategy manufactures and markets vaccines.

The companies did not receive federal money or participate in Operation Warp Speed, former President Donald J. Trump’s rapid vaccine initiative. They were not only the first to use the new mRNA technology, gaining Food and Drug Administration approval for a coronavirus vaccine, but also the first to authorize their vaccine for use in adolescents.

Steve Brozak, president of WBB Securities, a research investment bank focused on biotechnology, said the strategy “pays off as generously as anyone could ask for.”

Last week, Pfizer and BioNTech said that a booster given six months after the second dose of vaccine increases the potency of antibodies against the original virus and its Beta variant by five to tenfold. But antibody levels may not be the best biological measure of the need for booster doses, according to experts, who say it’s no surprise that antibodies increase after taking a third dose.

Baltimore’s former health commissioner, Dr. “Antibody response is not the only measure of immune protection,” said Leana S. Wen. “There are multiple studies that suggest these vaccines also stimulate B-cell and T-cell immunity, so even if there aren’t that many antibodies, that doesn’t mean no one is protected.”

In Israel, the government has agreed to provide Pfizer with data on vaccine recipients, and Pfizer is matching Israeli data with its own laboratory tests of antibody responses. Some people familiar with the data say that the two datasets taken together show that immunity wanes among those vaccinated after roughly six to eight months, leading to an increasing number of new infections.


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