Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine could become the second shot given to adolescents in the European Union after regulators on Friday (July 23) recommended approving it for 12- to 17-year-olds.
Use of the vaccine, Spikevax, will be the same in adolescents as in people over 18, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) said, adding the shot produced a comparable antibody response to that seen in 18- to 25-year-olds.
Vaccinating children has been considered important for reaching herd immunity and in light of the highly contagious Delta variant. Moderna in May said its vaccine was found to be safe and effective in teenagers.
The EMA said the two-dose vaccine is given four weeks apart, and its human medicines committee’s recommendation was based on a study of 3,732 participants.
Most children with COVID-19 develop only mild symptoms or none. Yet children remain at risk of becoming seriously ill and can spread the virus. Pfizer and German partner BioNTech’s vaccine was approved for teen use in May.
Formal approval from the European Commission would be needed to start rolling out the vaccine for teenagers.