Covid booster vaccines are likely to offer good protection against the Omicron variant, experts behind a major study said yesterday.
The body’s T cell immune response after a third dose suggests they will continue to protect against hospitalisation and death, researchers add.
The promising findings came as the former head of the UK’s Vaccines Taskforce said Omicron could pass in a fortnight and be a ‘storm in a teacup’.
The body’s T cell immune response after a third dose suggests they will continue to protect against hospitalisation and death, researchers add
Clive Dix, who stood down from his role in April, added: ‘If we look at all the facts we know so far, none of them are heading in the direction of being a super concern.’
Professor Saul Faust, who led the latest study, said six different vaccines – AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Moderna, Novavax, Janssen and CureVac – proved safe and effective as booster shots for those who had received two previous doses of AstraZeneca or Pfizer/BioNTech.
‘All of the vaccines in our study do show a statistically significant boost... RNA (Pfizer and Moderna) very high, but very effective boosts from Novavax, Janssen and AstraZeneca as well,’ he said.
Professor Faust, director of the NIHR Clinical Research Facility at University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust, said T cell immunity could also play a significant role in fending off Omicron – the cells work alongside antibodies to seek out and destroy the virus.
Samples from the government-backed CovBoost study have now been passed to the UK Health Security Agency to look at how well the Omicron variant can be neutralised by vaccines