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Covid-19: vaccination could concern adolescents

 Covid-19: vaccination could concern adolescents

According to "Le Parisien", Pfizer will soon file with the European Medicines Agency a request for authorization to vaccinate adolescents.

Covid-19: vaccination could concern adolescents

''While Europe is stepping up its vaccination campaign against Covid-19 a little more each day in order to return to normal life as quickly as possible'', some dare to ask the question. What about the vaccination of the youngest? If, 'during a recent press briefing, Olivier Véran ruled out the possibility of vaccinating children', 'explaining that the question was not currently relevant', 'could the answer concerning adolescents be different? Pfizer is already in the starting blocks'. According to information from Le Parisien , Wednesday April 28, the American laboratory intends to solicit the European health authorities on the subject.

Prevent the virus from circulating

At the end of March, Pfizer-BioNTech indicated that its vaccine against Covid-19 was also 100% effective in adolescents aged 12 to 15 years. 'Studies still need to be carried out to consolidate these results, but the laboratory has already applied for authorization in the United States ', which is currently being studied by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). 'Studies are also carried out on younger populations, aged 6 months to 11 years'. And Pfizer is not alone:   its competitors who have already developed a vaccine are working on the same questions.

On the side of pediatricians, it is estimated that, "if we want to obtain collective immunity, we will not be able to do without the under 15s, they represent 18% of the population", recalls Doctor Christophe Batard, of the Association. French outpatient clinic. The president of the Covid-19 Vaccine Committee, the virologist Marie-Paule Kieny, confirms to the Parisian an evolution of the initial vaccination strategies .

"The filing of the file is imminent with the European Medicines Agency [EMA, Editor's note]", even directly announced the laboratory to the French daily. For its part, the German laboratory BioNTech, Pfizer's partner on the messenger RNA vaccine, informed the German magazine  Spiegel that it was about to submit an application for authorization of its vaccine to the EMA for adolescents from 12 to 15 years old. This could lead to approval in June. "In Europe, we are in the final stages before submitting" the data from clinical trials to the EMA. The validation should take between four and six weeks, depending on the boss of the company.

Developed until now to reduce mortality and morbidity in the face of the virus, it consisted in prioritizing the most vulnerable and the oldest people. According to her, these strategies are changing everywhere: "We now want to prevent the circulation of the virus (...) to be able to reopen society (culture, sport, economy) without fear of an epidemic outbreak, including among young people who would transmit the viruses. to vulnerable populations and avoid as much as possible the appearance of variants. "

Adolescents as contagious as adults

To be able to definitively get rid of the epidemic, it would therefore be necessary to integrate the youngest into vaccination, who are however rather resistant to it . The virologist even considers it "essential" to vaccinate adolescents in particular in order to overcome the epidemic. She's not the only one. To the daily, the president of the National Professional Council of Pediatrics, Robert Cohen, recalls that adolescents are as contagious as an adult and that messenger RNA vaccines, such as Pfizer, can help limit these contaminations, especially that they seem to be well tolerated in adolescent subjects.

The Ministry of Health continues for the moment to prioritize vaccination according to age, the aim being to limit the development of severe forms of the disease. If the authorities do not close the door to vaccination of adolescents, however, they indicate that the issue can only be addressed when the country has a sufficient number of doses for the entire population. Not sure, therefore, that Pfizer's request, if validated by the European Medicines Agency, immediately finds an echo in France .

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