The effectiveness of boosters against Covid-19 is likely to decline over the next few months, and people may need another chance in the fall of 2022, Moderna CEO Stephane Bancel said at a Goldman Sachs-organized health conference on Thursday.
Bancel said the company is working on a vaccine candidate tailored for the omicron variant of the coronavirus, but that it will hardly be available in the next two months.
“I still think we’ll need boosters in the fall of ’22 and beyond,” Bancel said.
On Friday, the Food and Drug Administration shortened the waiting time for the third dose of Moderna Covid vaccine to five months after the second shot, instead of six months. The FDA’s change to the Moderna vaccine comes just days after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended people get a Pfizer booster syringe five months after the first two-dose series.
Bancel’s comments about the need for a fourth shot come in the heels of Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, who cites a study on Tuesday that a fourth dose of Covid-19 vaccine increases antibodies five times a week after the shot is administered.
Moderna, which benefits from repeated inoculations, said during the third quarter earnings results for commercial booster market sales could be up to $ 2 billion in the United States by 2022.