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FDA advisors recommend updating COVID vaccine booster

(NBC) - Advisers to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Thursday recommended updating the Covid vaccines to target a circulating strain of the virus, while pushing for newer vaccines that provide longer-lasting protection.

The FDA's vaccines and related biological products advisory committee voted unanimously in support of tweaking the shots to target an XBB strain, as well as dropping the original Coronavirus strain from the formulation.

The committee did not, however, make a formal recommendation on which specific XBB lineage the updated boosters should target.

Nor did it make a recommendation on who should get the shots and when.

The latter will likely be left up to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which has its own advisory committee meeting next week.

The recommendation will now be handed off to the FDA, which is expected to make a final decision soon on which COVID strain to target.

Drugmakers need enough time to produce and distribute the new shots, which are expected to be used as early as September as part of a Fall booster campaign.

Pfizer said it could distribute reformulated doses as early as the end of July, depending on the strain selected.

Moderna said it expects to begin shipping updated doses, pending FDA approval, by the end of the summer.

Novavax said it could have updated doses available in the Fall.

Article Topic Follows: Local Health

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