Janssen effective booster for COVID-19 vaccines -health expert

By GISELLE OMBAY, GMA News

Published January 31, 2022 8:53pm

Heterologous booster vaccination or using a different vaccine brand as booster, including the single jab Janssen COVID-19 vaccine is “effective” in strengthening the immune system against the viral disease, a member of the government’s Vaccine Expert Panel (VEP) said on Monday.

During a media forum, Dr. Isagani Padolina cited the data issued by the World Health Organization (WHO) in March 2021 that clinical trials showed that the Janssen jab has “the capacity to boost antibody concentrations” six months after the primary series of mRNA vaccines such as Pfizer or Moderna.

A second dose of an mRNA jab also “induces neutralizing antibody concentrations” among those who received a Janssen dose by four to 22 folds higher than a second dose of Janssen, Padolina added.

“Ang conclusion natin dito, maganda ‘yung priming [The conclusion here is that the priming is good]. ‘Yung single-dose J&J vaccine adequately primes the immune response. Tapos in the phase of waning antibodies, you can use J&J, Moderna, and Pfizer as a booster dose. Maganda ‘yung data niya, lalo na sa [The data is good especially in] heterologous na boosting,” Padolina said.

Messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines “teach our cells how to make a protein that will trigger an immune response inside our bodies,” according to the Center for Disease Control.

In a separate message to reporters, the DOH however said that while Janssen has been granted Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for booster shots, it is yet to be implemented in the country due to “logistical concerns.”

“Just want to clarify that as per EUA last April 19, 2021, Janssen is part of the combination for booster doses. But as per NVOC (National Vaccination Operations Center) Advisory, this is not yet for implementation due to logistical concerns,” DOH said.

Padolina also cited a preliminary study showing the effectiveness of homologous Janssen vaccine booster given six to nine months after receiving its single dose during the Omicron variant wave in South Africa where the variant was first detected.

The preliminary data demonstrated that Janssen booster is 93% effective against hospital admission within 0 to 13 days after inoculation.

Based on the Department of Health’s national COVID-19 vaccination dashboard, a total of 60,341,424 individuals have already received their first dose against COVID-19 as of Monday.

Of this number, 58,793,410 have completed their doses, while 7,335,558 have received their booster shots after reaching the three to six month requirement.–LDF, GMA News

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