Vaccine against Omicron could be ready in early 2022, Moderna says

10:57, 29 November 2021
Vaccine against Omicron could be ready in early 2022, Moderna says Photo: Md Niamul Hossain Rifat/Keystone Press Agency/Global Look Press

Medical Chief Officer for Moderna, Dr. Paul Burton on Sunday said that the “reformulated” vaccine against the new variant might be expected to roll out at the beginning of the next year.

However, it remains unclear whether modern vaccines may protect an individual from the new variant dubbed Omicron which is considered to be highly contagious, and whether modernized sorts of vaccines will be needed to protect an individual from the new strain.

“We should know about the ability of the current vaccine to provide protection in the next couple of weeks, but the remarkable thing about the MRNA vaccines, Moderna platform is that we can move very fast,” Burton told BBC.

“If we have to make a brand new vaccine I think that’s going to be early 2022 before that’s really going to be available in large quantities,” Burton said.

Omicron, the new variant of coronavirus, was first spotted in South Africa and reported on Wednesday and it could have already spread to many countries worldwide, including the UK, Australia, Israel, Italy, Germany, Hong Kong, Botswana, Netherlands and Belgium. Many countries came up with the decision to prohibit flights from southern Africa to prevent the possible surge of infections with the new strain. Israel closed its borders for all the foreigners entering the country for 14 days.