Vaccines Commission in Germany: “Second dose not with AstraZeneca”

The German Permanent Vaccination Commission (Stiko) advises people under 60 who have received the first dose of AstraZeneca to have a different vaccine injected for the second dose. This is what we read in a “draft decision” presented late last night by the German vaccination authority. In particular, Stiko recommends that a vaccine with mRNA be used for the second dose. Currently in Germany the only other vaccines available that use messenger RNA technology are Biontech-Pfizer and Moderna.

“The data on animal experiments show that the immune response is the same after the (second) heterologous vaccination”, Stiko president Thomas Mertens told Spiegel. «Now it is necessary to clarify with scientific data how valid the protection is for humans. I hope that we will soon have data available ”he continued. On March 30, the Standing Commission had recommended a stop to vaccination with AstraZeneca under 60 years of age.

Immunologist, this is not an unreasonable hypothesis

“It is not unreasonable” the hypothesis being studied by the German permanent vaccination commission of using an RNA vaccine as a second dose, after the first made with that of AstraZeneca. In fact, in Great Britain a study is in progress that evaluates this different modality, as the immunologist explains to ANSA Giuseppe Remuzzi, director of the Mario Negri Institute in Milan. “The fact that it is not an unreasonable hypothesis is demonstrated by the fact that in the United Kingdom a study on 800 volunteers approved by the ethics committee and the British health authorities has already been launched a few months ago, who is studying just that, ”he continues. “That is, they are comparing groups – he continues – where some are given the first dose of AstraZeneca vaccine and the second of Pfizer, another to whom they give the first with half a dose of AstraZeneca and the second whole and another in which they are given two half doses “. Having started a few months ago, according to Remuzzi, «the results should arrive within a few months. This is a question of some interest, because RNA vaccines induce an antibody response different from that of viral vector vaccines, and it could therefore also emerge that the two types of vaccine have a complementary action. Maybe even in Germany they decide to proceed in this direction within an experimentation ».

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