Vaccini, Ema’s release on the “unsustainability of calls every four months” is not about the emergency but the long-term strategy

Vaccini, Ema’s release on the “unsustainability of calls every four months” is not about the emergency but the long-term strategy
Vaccini, Ema’s release on the “unsustainability of calls every four months” is not about the emergency but the long-term strategy

“We can’t keep giving booster doses every three to four months“. It is the sentence pronounced on Tuesday by Marco Cavaleri, responsible for vaccines of theMom, during a video briefing with the press in connection from Amsterdam. It could be translated into an alleged skepticism of the European Medicines Agency towards the booster against Covid. The concept expressed by Cavaleri, however, was part of a broader speech, which distinguished between the emergency situation we are experiencing today with the spread of variante Omicron and what instead will have to become a long-term strategy. Cavaleri in fact explained: “If the use of calls could be considered part of a emergency plan, repeated vaccinations at short intervals would not represent one sustainable strategy a long term“. Certainly not a new thought: it was also underlined byWorld Health Organization, as well as by several immunologists in the United States.

Indeed, during the press conference Cavaleri also underlined the importance of the third dose: “It is becoming increasingly clear that boosters are needed to extend the protection vaccines, why fades over time, typically after about 5-7 months with the Delta e variant faster with Omicron “. “The data on the impact in real life – added the head of the vaccination strategy of Ema – show that the booster dose strengthens the immune response and strengthens or extends protection “. For these reasons, Cavaleri continued, discussions are already underway regarding the “possibility of administering a second booster dose with the same vaccines currently in use “. Compared to this hypothetical fourth dose, that Israel is already administering to over 60 and at frail people, the EMA clarified that “we don’t have yet seen the data“. “And we want to see this data before making any recommendations,” Cavaleri stressed.

I fears of the European agency therefore concern the risk that this strategy will go on for too long. “We are enough worry about a strategy that involves repeated vaccinations in a short period of time ”, the head of vaccines reiterated during the briefing. For what reasons? “If we choose a strategy for which we give doses every four months, we will potentially end up having problems with the immune response“, Explained Cavaleri again. The immune system response “may not be so good as we would like it to be, so we should be careful of do not overload the immune system with repeated immunizations “. A speech that does not concern the immunocompromess peopleand, which may indeed benefit from another additional dose. Secondly, Cavaleri continued, there is also the risk of “fatiguing the population with continuous administration of boosters”. Therefore, he concluded his reasoning, “if from an epidemiological point of view seeing the situation” doing the booster “should be the only solution, then it can be done once or maybe twice, but that’s not something we can do repeat constantly“.

In recent days, the topic was raised in the United States, where is the 73% of the population has two doses but just over a third made the recall. And also the New York Times he asked several experts if the “forever boosting” strategy could be that winning against the coronavirus. Deepta Bhattacharya, an immunologist at the University of Arizona, responded like Cavaleri, explaining that recalling at short intervals “is certainly not sustainable long-term”. Akiko Iwasaki, immunologist at Yale University, recalled that “it is not uncommon to administer vaccines periodically”, but added that there are strategies best compared to “making calls every six months“. Cavaleri also focused on this point, always distinguishing between the emergency phase current and future scenario: when the virus will become endemic, he explained, “it would be better to start thinking about a booster administration more spaced in time”. Then follow the same method already adopted for the flu vaccine, with an annual administration to be carried out “at the beginning of winter season“. Two other immunologists have contacted since New York Times, Ali Ellebedy of Washington University in St. Louis e Shane Crotty of the La Jolla Institute for Immunology in California, advise instead of waiting for at least the new specific vaccine to arrive Omicron: “There is no point in continuing to vaccinate against a strain that has already disappeared,” Ellebedy explained. So if the intention is to administer even a fourth dose, “I would definitely expect a vaccine based on Omicron“.

A similar recommendation was also expressed by the experts of theWHO, according to which against the emergence of new variants it is not useful to continue to carry out boosters with existing vaccines: “Vaccines against Covid-19 that have a high impact on the prevention of infection and transmission, as well as on the prevention of severe disease and death “. “A vaccination strategy based on repeated reminders“Of current vaccines” has little chance of being appropriate or sustainable ”, stressed the WHO. “Waiting for these” new “vaccines to be available, and in light of the evolution of the virus, perhaps it will be necessary update the composition of current vaccines anti-Covid, to ensure they continue to deliver the level of protection recommended by the WHO against infection and disease “caused by variants, the experts stressed.

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