Preparing for a Vaccine Update
The FDA recently launched plans to give the Covid-19 vaccine a seasonal update. Beginning this fall, Covid boosters will see a shift in the contents of the vaccine weighing heavily on current mutants of the virus instead of the original strain.1 Why the change? It has to do with the human immune response. Let’s take a look.
Why Vaccine Formulations are Changing
Today, all manufacturers of Covid-19 vaccines still include the original virus in their formulations. This inclusion can be detrimental because of a process known as “imprinting.”2 Imprinting refers to the immune system’s ability to recognize and respond to original Covid strains more strongly than newer strains. This means that newer virus strains aren’t getting covered to the desired extent. Including the original virus in vaccine formulas presents an obvious challenge since individuals primarily need protection against current strains and not the original virus.
The New Booster Featuring XBB Variants
To combat new strains, the FDA is pursuing the creation of a vaccine booster that only includes XBB variants. XBB variants are the most recent Covid strains to surface after Omicron.3 Targeting these strains will bring greater protection to the public based on the current variants that are circulating.
As of now, FDA leadership is still determining the exact strain to include in the newest Covid boosters, but it should belong to the XBB mutant family. The target to release the XBB booster is set for fall of this year. Speculations continue as to whether new Covid-19 boosters will cycle around every year with new variants—much like a traditional flu shot.4 Health regulatory bodies like WHO and the FDA continue to remain flexible based on the changing nature of the virus and current public needs. Time will tell.
Prepare for the Vaccine Surge this Fall
For now, vaccine manufacturers and pharmacies are preparing for the big push and stocking vaccines for the updated boosters later this year. If your pharmacy or medical facility is preparing for a new batch of Covid vaccines this fall, it’s time to get prepared. Explore ABS cold storage solutions to safeguard your vaccines and prepare for the days ahead.
American Biotech Supply
American Biotech Supply offers a full range of medical grade vaccine cold storage that meets NSF/ANSI 456 Vaccine Standards. Learn more at American BioTech Supply – NSF/ANSI 456 Compliance.