Status: 14.01.2022 4:26 p.m.
Those who wish to be vaccinated or boosted will soon have more choices: according to Minister of Health Lauterbach, the Nuvaxovid vaccine from Novavax will be available from February 21. This could attract vaccine skeptics.
After Comirnaty from BioNTech, Spikevax from Moderna and the vaccines from Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca, a fifth vaccine is coming to the German market: the Nuvaxovid preparation from Novavax. The first delivery of 1.75 million cans should be available from February 21, Federal Health Minister Karl Lauterbach said. The vaccine can be injected at vaccination centers from the third week of February. The vaccine was originally due to arrive in January.
The delivery of an additional 3.25 million cans ordered by the federal government is expected to be further delayed. At best, according to Lauterbach, we can expect it at the end of February. The minister said exact dates have yet to be set.
Alternative for people who do not want an mRNA vaccine
Lauterbach announced that the preparation, which was “almost a dead vaccine”, should be available for those who preferred this type of vaccination. The protein-based vaccine could be an alternative, especially for vaccine skeptics who have reservations about new mRNA technologies and vector vaccines. Studies have shown that the Novavax vaccine is 90 percent effective against coroavirus. Side effects were similar to those of other vaccines and were mainly pain at the injection site.
Two doses are injected about three weeks apart. The Novavax vaccine works the same way as flu vaccines. It’s made with lab-grown copies of the spike protein that coats the coronavirus. After vaccination, the human immune system uses it to generate antibodies against the protein and can thus fight against the Covid 19 disease. The Novavax vaccine also contains saponin as a vaccination booster. Not much research has been done on the side effects of saponin.
Also suitable against Omikron?
It is not known how well the vaccine helps against the omicron variant. Novavax boss Stanley Erck announced at the JP Morgan health conference this week that further studies would examine the effectiveness of a vaccine designed for Omikron.
Novavax’s product was recently approved as the fifth corona vaccine in the EU. The European Commission has ordered a total of 100 million cans. Brussels also got an option for an additional 100 million cans.
Approvals in over 170 countries
The company, based in Gaithersburg, Maryland, USA, says it has already received approval in more than 170 countries, primarily through the World Health Organization (WHO). Novavax already sells its product in Indonesia, the Philippines and India.
In 2022, Novavax plans to build capacity for a good two billion doses of vaccines. The vaccine is produced in collaboration with Indian contractor Serum Institute of India, which is now the largest vaccine manufacturer in the world – calculated in doses.