A vaccinator draws a Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pediatric vaccine in Lansdale, Pennsylvania, U.S., December 5, 2021.
Hannah Beier | Reuters
Three doses of Pfizer and BioNTech’s vaccine provide a high level of protection against the omicron variant of the virus that causes Covid-19, the companies announced on Wednesday.
A booster shot of the vaccine increases antibody protection 25-fold compared with the initial two-dose series, according to a preliminary lab study. A third shot offers a high level of protection comparable to the effect of two doses against the original strain of the virus.
The companies said they will have a vaccine that specifically targets omicron available by March 2022.
“Although two doses of the vaccine may still offer protection against severe disease caused by the Omicron strain, it’s clear from these preliminary data that protection is improved with a third dose of our vaccine,” Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla said in a joint statement with BioNTech.
“Ensuring as many people as possible are fully vaccinated with the first two dose series and a booster remains the best course of action to prevent the spread of COVID-19,” he said.