What do we know about new generation anti-Covid vaccines?


  • According to Public Health France, during the week of August 29, 2022, there were 100% of Omicron among the viruses sequenced.
  • In France, people eligible for the second booster dose are those over 60, pregnant women, people at risk of severe form and healthcare professionals.

As of September 15, there were 33,263 new cases of Covid-19 recorded over the past 24 hours according to Public health France, an increase of 67.4% over the last seven days. Almost all of them were infected with the Omicron variant.

Omicron sub-variants: the vaccine targets BA.4 and BA.1

To better protect the population, the agency european medicines (EMA) approved, this Monday, September 12, the use of a new vaccine against Covid-19. This is manufactured by the Pfizer/BioNTech laboratory.

It is one of the latest vaccines to arrive on the market, those called bivalent, which protect against the original strain of the Covid-19 virus but also against the sub-variants of Omicron: BA.1, BA.4 and BA.5 , the latter two being the majority today among the cases of Covid-19.

Previous bivalent vaccines targeted BA.1

In a press release published on September 1, the EMA had previously approved the use of bivalent vaccines from Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna, but these only targeted the BA.1 subvariant.

The particularity of the new Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine – the second bivalent that the laboratory has developed – is therefore to also target the BA.4 and BA.5 sub-variants, in addition to the original strain of Covid-19 and the sub-variant BA.1.

Bivalent vaccines from Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna still use Messenger RNA technology. This involves sending harmless copies of the virus for the body to then produce the proteins needed to make antibodies against the virus. “With messenger RNA vaccines, the idea is to let our cells make the component against which our body will learn to defend itself.“, precise National Institute of Health and Medical Research (Inserm).

New anti-Covid serums soon in France

In other countries, such as the United States or the United Kingdom, the marketing of bivalent vaccines has already been validated. In France, for the moment, there is no date of placing on the market. But they should be used for the vaccine booster campaign. Indeed, theopinion of the Scientific Council published on July 19 judge that “these new vaccines have an efficacy comparable to the previous ones and perhaps better preserved on the new Omicron variants”.

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