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Moderna would have specific vaccine data for omicron in March

Moderna Inc.’s vaccine candidate against the omicron variant of the coronavirus will enter clinical development in the coming weeks, and the company expects to be able to share data with regulators around March, CEO Stephane Bancel said.

“The vaccine is running out and should be in the next few weeks. We hope to have data in March to share with regulators to determine the next steps,” Bancel said at the World Economic Forum in Davos, which is taking place virtually.

Moderna is also developing a single-dose vaccine that combines a COVID-19 booster dose with its experimental flu shot.

Bancel said the best case scenario was that the combined COVID-flu vaccine would be available by fall 2023, at least in some countries.

“Our goal is to be able to have just one booster a year so that we don’t have compliance issues if people don’t want to get two or three shots in the winter,” he said.

Many countries are already offering a third dose of a COVID-19 vaccine to their citizens, especially the elderly and the immunocompromised, while Israel has begun offering a fourth dose.

In early January, Moderna’s CEO said people may need a fourth shot in the fall of 2022, as the effectiveness of COVID-19 boosters is likely to wane in the coming months.

However, the booster schedules have been met with skepticism from some disease experts, including the European Union (EU) medicines regulator, who has expressed doubts about the need for a fourth dose.



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