BioNTech Also wants Corona Vaccine for Children from 5 Years
German BioNTech wants the corona vaccine it is marketing with Pfizer to be approved by regulators for children aged 5-11, also in Europe.
The biotechnology company will present the study results into the use of the vaccine within that age group within a few weeks, founder Özlem Türeci told Der Spiegel.
“We are already preparing production,” Türeci told the magazine. She explained that children receive the same vaccine but in smaller doses. Research data on vaccine use among children as young as six months of age are also expected by the end of the year.
Pfizer/BioNTech’s mRNA vaccine was the first corona vaccine to be approved for use in the European Union last year. It is widely used, including the Netherlands vaccinates children from the age of twelve with this corona vaccine.
Vaccines based on messenger RNA (mRNA) are new. Previous vaccines were invariably based on the pathogens themselves, for example, a piece of a weakened or inactivated virus. mRNA vaccines contain a piece of genetic code of a specific part of the coronavirus. In the case of Pfizer/BioNTech and also Moderna, it concerns a code of the so-called spike protein, with which the virus penetrates body cells.
As the name implies, messenger RNA plays the role of messenger. Around the puncture site, cells in the body of the person receiving it receives instructions from the mRNA to start producing the spike protein itself. The immune system recognizes that protein as foreign and attacks it. If the vaccinated person later comes into contact with the coronavirus, the immune system recognizes the spike protein and takes action.