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Janssen vaccine fails in the real world against Delta Variant – people may need a second dose

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Manish Saini
Manish works as a Journalist and writer at Revyuh.com. He has studied Political Science and graduated from Delhi University. He is a Political engineer, fascinated by politics, and traditional businesses. He is also attached to many NGO's in the country and helping poor children to get the basic education. Email: Manish (at) revyuh (dot) com

As Janssen is a single-dose vaccine unlike the Pfizer/BioNTech, Moderna and Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccines, which are administered in two doses, the J&J vaccine is only administered in one shot.

The Delta variant of Covid-19 first identified in India is raging through the US, proving far more contagious than previous Covid strains.

According to latest data, Delta variant now accounts for 83% of new coronavirus cases in this country.

But more worrying is the results of the new study and according to study author Nathaniel Landau, a virologist at NYU’s Grossman School of Medicine:

“The message that we wanted to give was not that people shouldn’t get the J&J vaccine, but we hope that in the future, it will be boosted with either another dose of J&J or a boost with Pfizer or Moderna.”

It means, increasing data suggests that the 13 million Americans who have received the J&J vaccination may need a second dosage.

“I have always thought, and often said, that the J&J vaccine is a two-dose vaccine,” John Moore, a virologist at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City, told the Times.

The new study, published on the preprint server BioRxiv and has not yet been peer-reviewed, shows that a single dosage of the AstraZeneca vaccine, which is comparable to J&J’s shot, had only around 33% effectiveness against symptomatic illness caused by the Delta variant.

In the study, Landau and his colleagues examined blood samples from 17 individuals who had received two doses of an mRNA vaccination and ten people who had received one dose of the J&J vaccine.

Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose coronavirus vaccine showed lower efficacy than Pfizer and Moderna and showed a bigger drop in efficacy against the Delta variant.

“The lower baseline means that what’s left to counter Delta is very weak,” Moore said.

“That is a substantial concern.”

While a second dose of the J&J vaccine may be sufficient to combat the new variant, there is indications that an mRNA vaccine, rather than another J&J injection, may perform even better.

As highlighted by the Times, many studies have proved that mixing one dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine with mRNA vaccines raises the immune response more effectively than two doses of AstraZeneca.

Even as some vaccines fail to protect against the Delta strain, immunisation rates in the United States have remained stagnant.

According to CDC statistics, less than half of the country’s population is fully vaccinated, and the majority of those who aren’t vaccinated are unlikely to be vaccinated, according to an Axios-Ipsos survey released Tuesday.

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