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Health Canada approves updated Moderna vaccine for Omicron variant

Posted in Canada, Featured

Published on September 01, 2022 with No Comments

The vaccine is said to be ‘significantly’ more effective against Omicron

Health Canada has formally approved Moderna’s updated COVID-19 vaccine targeting the Omicron variant.

It has been approved for use in adults 18 and older.

In a decision summary made public Thursday, Health Canada said the new bivalent vaccine induced “significantly higher responses” to the Omicron BA.1 virus in comparison to Moderna’s original coronavirus vaccine, officially branded as Spikevax.

While the updated vaccine was developed to target the Omicron BA.1 variant, Health Canada says clinical trials suggest the new vaccine still elicits a “stronger immune response” against more recent mutations of Omicron — BA.4 and BA.5 — which are now dominant.

“Results of exploratory analyses suggest that a second booster with Spikevax Bivalent would provide a superior neutralizing antibody response against BA.4/5 compared to a second booster with Spikevax Original,” reads a portion of the decision.

Health Canada also reports that “no new safety concerns have been identified in studies when compared to the currently approved Spikevax mRNA vaccine.”

The updated vaccine is a combination of two strains, also known as “bivalent” shots. They contain both the original vaccine formulation and protection against the original Omicron variant BA.1.


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