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A UK study shows that six different coronavirus vaccines are safe and effective when used as a booster.

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Ethan Hall, an emergency medical technician, gives a Pfizer-BioNtech COVID-19 booster injection to a kidney transplant patient, Mark Turney, 66, at Hartford Hospital in Hartford, Connecticut, on August 24, 2021.

Joseph Precious | AFP | Getty Images

A UK study found six different COVID-19 vaccines to be safe and effective when used in additional doses.

A peer-reviewed phase II trial, published Thursday in The Lancet Medical Journal, investigated the safety and efficacy of seven vaccines following initial two doses of either the Oxford-AstraZeneca or Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines.

The vaccines included in the study were those produced by Oxford-AstraZeneca, Pfizer-BioNTech, Novavax, Johnson & Johnson, Moderna, Valneva and Curevac.

In a study of 2,878 adults 30 years of age and older, none of the seven vaccines showed safety concerns. Fatigue, headache, and pain at the injection site were the most common side effects and were reported the most in young people.

A total of 912 participants experienced adverse reactions from the additional injection, and 24 serious events were reported during the study period.

The study’s authors said the participants were “in good health” and were recruited to participate from 18 different UK regions. About half received two doses of Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine and the remaining cohort received Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.

About half of the study participants were over 70 years of age. Some individuals were included in the control group and received the meningococcal vaccine as a placebo.

various immune responses

Four weeks after administering the booster, the researchers measured the participants’ levels of antibodies targeting the coronavirus spike protein.

The spike protein is a key part of the structure that allows the coronavirus to enter human cells.

T-cell responses, which play a key role in combating viral infections and may have some effect on the severity of COVID-19, have also been monitored.

These results were measured for alpha, beta, and delta variants, as well as the original variant that first appeared in China.

Two doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine improved immunity between 10 and 12 weeks after receiving all seven vaccines, a study found.

All vaccines except Balneva boosted immunity in participants whose initial two doses were the Pfizer-BioNtech vaccines, the study found.

For participants who received the first two doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, spike protein attack antibody levels were 1.8-fold (after Valneva) to 32.3-fold higher (after Moderna) at 28 days after the third dose, depending on the booster dose. the vaccine you use. In patients receiving the first two doses of Pfizer-BioNtech, the increase in antibody levels after booster increased from 1.3-fold (after Balneva) to 11.5-fold (after Moderna).

Research limitations

However, the study’s authors noted that they did not study how well different combinations of boosters work in terms of preventing transmission, hospitalization, and death from coronavirus. They added that the relationship between antibody levels and long-term immunity after 4 weeks of booster is still unknown.

Saul Faust, director of the NIHR clinical research facility and trial lead at the University of Southampton Hospital, said the findings were “really encouraging.”

“[This study] It gives confidence and flexibility to develop booster programs in the UK and globally, and other factors like supply chain and logistics also come into play,” he said in a press release on Thursday.

“Further work will generate data 3 months and 1 year after people receive a booster, providing insight into their effects on long-term protective and immune memory.”

Other limitations included the age range of the participants, the fact that most of the people participating in the study were Caucasian, and the shortened time between doses, which could impair immune responses for the authors of the report.

Researchers are currently studying the effect of the booster 7 to 8 months after the initial dose, with results expected in 2022.

In the UK, most people give Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine or Moderna vaccine as a booster, but some people get Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine if there is no alternative.

The US FDA has approved Moderna and Pfizer-BioNtech vaccines for use in the country’s booster programs, while Israel uses only Pfizer-BioNtech vaccines.

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