Health

Pfizer says its Covid vaccine is ‘safe and strongly protective’ in 12 to 15-year-olds


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fizer has announced its Covid-19 vaccine is safe and strongly protective for 12 to 15-year-olds.

The firm’s coronavirus jab is currently only authorised for people aged 16 and older.

Following the release of preliminary data of a study involving 2,260 US volunteers aged 15 to 15, Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech said in coming weeks they plan to ask the US Food and Drug Administration and European regulators to allow emergency use of the vaccine starting at the age of 12.

Data from the study showed no cases of Covid-19 among fully vaccinated adolescents, compared with 18 among those given placebo vaccines.

The Phase 3 trial in adolescents demonstrated 100 per cent efficacy and robust antibody responses, said Pfizer.

Albert Bourla, chairman and chief executive officer of Pfizer, said: “We share the urgency to expand the authorization of our vaccine to use in younger populations and are encouraged by the clinical trial data from adolescents between the ages of 12 and 15.

“We plan to submit these data to FDA as a proposed amendment to our Emergency Use Authorization in the coming weeks and to other regulators around the world, with the hope of starting to vaccinate this age group before the start of the next school year.”

Ugur Sahin, CEO and co-founder of BioNTech, added: “Across the globe, we are longing for a normal life. This is especially true for our children.

Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine ‘works against rapid spread mutant strains’

“The initial results we have seen in the adolescent studies suggest that children are particularly well protected by vaccination, which is very encouraging given the trends we have seen in recent weeks regarding the spread of the B.1.1.7 UK variant.

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“It is very important to enable them to get back to everyday school life and to meet friends and family while protecting them and their loved ones.”

Pfizer is not the only company seeking to lower the age limit for its vaccine.

Results also are expected soon from a US study of Moderna’s vaccine in 12 to 17-year-olds.

AstraZeneca last month began a study of its vaccine among six to 17-year-olds in the UK, Johnson & Johnson is planning its own paediatric studies, and in China, Sinovac recently announced it had submitted preliminary data to Chinese regulators showing its vaccine is safe in children as young as three.



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