COVID-19 Pandemic

COVID digest: J&J says second shot boosts protection

Published : September 22, 2021 13:43 IST

J&J is expected to use data to bolster the case for booster shots. Photo: Slavomir Kubes/CTK/dpa/picture alliance

A booster dose of the Johnson & Johnson COVID jab has a 94 per cent efficacy rate, the drugmaker said.

In the United States, pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson said a second shot of its COVID-19 vaccine given two months after the first dose increased efficacy to 94 per cent. This was found to be the case against moderate to severe courses. A single dose has been found to give 70 per cent protection.

"A booster dose of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine further increases antibody responses among study participants who had previously received our vaccine,'' said Dr. Mathai Mammen, head of research and development at J&J.

U.S. President Joe Biden has been pushing for widespread booster shots, but his vaccination campaign received a blow last week, when a panel of experts advising the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, recommended against booster shots for younger population groups.

Here's a look at the latest coronavirus news from the rest of the world:

Asia

Australian authorities used pepper spray, rubber ball grenades and foam baton rounds to disperse violent protests against mandatory vaccinations in Australia’s second-largest city, Melbourne, on September 21. The demonstrators moved through the city center, throwing bottles, lighting flares and attacking police cars as they chanted slogans against COVID-19 vaccines and lockdown measures. Melbourne has been under lockdown for seven weeks as the city struggles to control the spread of the highly infectious delta variant.

Vietnam relaxed some coronavirus restrictions in Hanoi on September 21, after two months of lockdown. Under the new order, government offices, markets and essential services such as banking and takeaway restaurants are allowed to open. Schools remain closed, and public events and gatherings of over 10 people are still banned. Public transport remains suspended.

Europe

Germany has recorded 4,664 new COVID-19 infections, taking the country’s total tally to 4,150,516, according to data from the Robert Koch Institute for infectious diseases. With 81 deaths reported, the fatalities have risen to 93,052.

Americas

Canada's prime minister, Justin Trudeau, is set to remain in power with a minority government after a snap election. Trudeau said he won a clear mandate to govern Canada through the pandemic. "You are sending us back to work with a clear mandate to get Canada through this pandemic and to the brighter days ahead," Trudeau said as his main rival conceded the election. "What we've seen tonight is that millions of Canadians have chosen a progressive plan."

kb/fb (Reuters, AP, AFP, Reuters)

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