Corona/Omicron: Johnson booster against the variant

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A woman is vaccinated against coronavirus with the vaccine from Johnson & Johnson. © Gregor Fischer/dpa

A study from South Africa comes to a startling conclusion regarding the effectiveness of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine with respect to omicrons.

Cape Town – Is this maybe another basic to fight against the new Omikron corona variant? After all, no one would have expected the preliminary results of a South African study. They indicate high effectiveness of a booster vaccination with Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine against serious diseases caused by omicron. J&J’s vector vaccine, which requires only one dose for immunization compared to vaccines from Biontech/Pfizer, Moderna or Astrazeneca, provides 85% protection against hospitalization for omicron infection when given twice. This was announced by the South African Medical Research Council on Thursday.

Booster with Johnson & Johnson: High protection against omicron detected

For its study, the state panel compared 69,000 healthcare workers who had received two doses of J&J with a group of unvaccinated people. The survey took place between November 15 and December 20, i.e. at a time when the proportion of corona infections by the omicron variant in South Africa increased from 82 to 98%.

The study, which has not yet been peer-reviewed by outside scientists, also provides insight into how the booster vaccination effect unfolds. Their effectiveness against hospitalization for omicron infection was 63% during the first two weeks after the second dose of vaccine, but reached 85% one to two months after the booster.

Video: What to consider when boosting

Johnson & Johnson maintains its protective effect for a long time – good results thanks to the cellular immune response?

The vector vaccine from the American company Johnson & Johnson is particularly interesting for the African continent because of its logistical advantages. The study authors noted that their findings are significant as Africa increases its reliance on the J&J vaccine. J&J scientist Mathai Mammen said the study shows the vaccine “remains strong and stable over time, even against circulating variants such as omicron and delta.”

Previous laboratory studies had found that Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine was less potent at stimulating the production of coronavirus-neutralizing antibodies against omicron than mRNA vaccines such as those from Biontech/Pfizer. The fact that the J&J vaccine appears to work better in the human body than previously thought could be due to an increased reaction from another part of the human immune system, the so-called cellular immune response.

Corona: J&J boosters apparently work better than Biontech’s third can

A small study from Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston also indicates that a booster dose of the J&J vaccine after two doses of the Biontech/Pfizer vaccine may offer more protection against severe Covid-19 disease than three doses of the Biontech/Pfizer cans. . After three doses of Biontech/Pfizer, the antibodies increased significantly, but declined again within a few weeks.

After a J&J booster vaccination, however, the antibody level was significantly higher after four weeks, the study authors described. However, only 65 subjects participated in the study. (MD with AFP)

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