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Moderna says its new vaccine booster shows 'superior' response to Omicron

Justin Sullivan, Getty Images
Getty Images
Moderna says its new bivalent vaccine is its "lead candidate for a Fall 2022 booster." Here, a vial of the company's COVID-19 vaccine sits on a table at a vaccination clinic in San Rafael, California.

Moderna says its new vaccine candidate, which fights both the original COVID-19 strain and the now-dominant omicron variant, shows a "superior neutralizing antibody response" against the coronavirus compared to its original vaccine.

The "bivalent" vaccine — meaning it targets two different antigens — is Moderna's leading candidate to have an effective booster ready for fall of 2022, the company said.

"We are submitting our preliminary data and analysis to regulators with the hope that the Omicron-containing bivalent booster will be available in the late summer," Moderna CEO Stéphane Bancel said in a news release.

Because of the higher antibody response seen with the new vaccine candidate, Moderna predicts that people who get the booster will have protection that is "more durable over time" against omicron, compared to the original Moderna vaccine.
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