Pfizer says Omicron vaccines produce stronger immune response

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Man walking past Pfizer ad Massimo Giachetti / iStock

A pair of Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine boosters designed to target the Omicron variant of the COVID-19 virus have been shown to produce a significantly stronger immune response to Omicron, the companies said Saturday.

According to The Wall Street Journal, the vaccines were designed to target the original BA.1 subvariant of Omicron, but preliminary results suggest that they could also be effective against the increasingly dominant BA.4 and BA.5 strains.

"Based on these data, we believe we have two very strong Omicron-modified candidates that elicit a substantially higher immune response against Omicron than we've seen to date," Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla said in a statement.

The modified boosters reportedly "increased neutralizing antibody levels 9.1 to 10.9 times, depending on the dose," per the Journal.

The results of the study have not yet been peer reviewed or published.

According to The New York Times, 67 percent of Americans are fully vaccinated, but only 32 percent are boosted. Interest in receiving another booster is likely to be even lower. In January, 20 percent of Americans said that COVID was the biggest problem facing the country. By June, that number was down to four percent.

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