Pfizer and German partner BioNTech have submitted preliminary data from the late trial of their COVID-19 vaccine in children aged 5 to 12 years to the US Food and Drug Administration, raising hopes that an important patient group could be added to the program. as fast as late as October.
“Topline immunogenicity and safety reading for the other two age groups from the trial – children 2 to [less than] 5 years and children 6 months to [less than] 2 years – expected as soon as in the fourth quarter of this year, “the companies said in a statement.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and president Joe Biden’s chief physician, told MSNBC early Tuesday that hope is now approval by the end of October.
The move comes at a time when the United States still suffers more than 2,000 COVID-19 deaths a day, according to a New York Times tracker that matched levels in late February, the majority of them among unvaccinated people. New cases and hospitalizations are declining, but the death toll is still stubbornly high. More than 690,000 Americans have died from COVID so far, according to data aggregated by Johns Hopkins University, and that number is now set to hit 700,000 within five days.
Alaska is still leading the country with new cases measured per capita. Population and hospitals are rationing, the tracker indicates. Alaska has fully vaccinated only 50% of its population, below a national average that now stands at 55.4%, according to a CDC tracker.
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A study published Tuesday by the Kaiser Family Foundation on vaccine behavior found that the biggest motivator for unvaccinated people is fear of the highly transmissible delta variant, which has been dominant in the United States for several months. Other factors, such as the FDA’s full approval of the Pfizer vaccine and mandates from governments and companies, are currently less effective, according to the study.
“Large gaps in vaccine intake remain after partisanship, education level, age and health insurance status,” the authors wrote.
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The study also found that the debate over booster shots was both confusing and negative for unvaccinated people, who believe requiring a third dose so soon after primary vaccination means the vaccines are not working as well as experts have said they do.
“The main reason why vaccinated adults see driving with high case loads is vaccination refusal, while the unvaccinated say the main reason is that the vaccines are not working as well as promised,” the study found.
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Elsewhere, Russia suffered its highest death toll in a day on Tuesday at 852, Reuters reported, surpassing the previous record set last week. Daily cases began to climb in early September after millions of Russian students returned to schools and colleges.
India reported its lowest daily death toll from COVID-19 infections in more than six months, Al Jazeera reported. The death toll from 179 COVID deaths, reported Tuesday, is the lowest daily since mid-March.
Japan drops the state of emergency on Thursday as the number of new infections is lowered, the Associated Press reported. Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga is expected to announce the lifting of the emergency and subsequent plans later Tuesday.
The French pharmaceutical company Sanofi SNY,
has halted the development of a COVID-19 vaccine candidate using mRNA technology, as have Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna MRNA,
vaccines, MarketWatch sister publication Barrons reported.
Sanofi said that preliminary results from a phase 1/2 study of the vaccine had been positive and that no safety concerns had been observed, but it would drop the program given the competition. Sanofi will instead seek to develop other vaccines based on mRNA technology.
The global number of coronavirus-borne diseases rose Tuesday at 232.5 million, while the death toll rose above 4.76 million, according to data aggregated by Johns Hopkins University.
The United States continues to lead the world with a total of 43.1 million cases and 691,202 deaths.
India is number two after the cases after the United States with 33.7 million and has suffered 447,373 deaths. Brazil has the second-highest death toll of 594,653 and 21.4 million cases.
In Europe, Russia recorded the most deaths at 201,854, followed by Britain at 136,730.
China, where the virus was first discovered in late 2019, has had 108,360 confirmed cases and 4,809 deaths, according to its official figures, which are largely massively underreported.