Yet another jab: Pfizer and BioNTech say vaccine for new ‘Omicron’ strain can be ready in 100 days

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The discovery of yet another COVID variant could be a boon to pharmaceutical companies which have already cashed in on vaccines and are moving with lightning fast speed to produce yet another “jab” to protect against the omicron strain, the latest in a potentially endless string of mutations that could fuel the industry for years to come.

Americans who were happily enjoying the Thanksgiving holiday were served up a triple helping of media hysteria over the new variant which threatens to upend a nation that has already been battered by onerous restrictions, skyrocketing inflation, job losses and unprecedented shortages. However, according to two of Big Pharma’s heaviest hitters, a vaccine could be ready to go within 100 days.

In a statement emailed to Fox Business, Pfizer said that the vaccine manufacturers were “remaining vigilant” and “constantly conducting surveillance efforts focused on monitoring for emerging variants that potentially escape protection from our vaccine.”

The company also stated, “As always, we will continue to follow the science as we examine the best approaches to protecting people against COVID-19,” Pfizer wrote. “In the event that vaccine-escape variant emerges, Pfizer and BioNTech expect to be able to develop and produce a tailor-made vaccine against that variant in approximately 100 days, subject to regulatory approval.”

Fox Business also received a separate statement from a BioNTech spokesperson.

“The variant differs significantly from previously observed variants as it has additional mutations located in the spike protein. We expect more data from the laboratory tests in two weeks at the latest. These data will provide more information about whether B.1.1.529 could be an escape variant that may require an adjustment of our vaccine if the variant spreads globally,” the network reported.

“Pfizer and BioNTech have taken actions months ago to be able to adapt the mRNA vaccine within six weeks and ship initial batches within 100 days in the event of an escape variant. To that end, the companies have begun clinical trials with variant-specific vaccines (alpha and delta) to collect safety and tolerability data that can be provided to regulators as part of the blueprint studies in the event of [a] needed variant-specific vaccine,” the spokesperson added.

Additionally, a spokesperson for Johnson & Johnson also told Fox Business, “We are closely monitoring newly emerging COVID-19 virus strains with variations in the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein and are already testing the effectiveness of our vaccine against the new and rapidly spreading variant first detected in southern Africa,”

However, some are skeptical of both the new variant as well as the pharmaceutical companies’ rush to production of the new vaccine and they took to Twitter to express their opinions.

The news of the new variant is also a booster for President Joe Biden’s mass vaccination campaign, one which despite increasingly menacing threats to holdouts, has failed to convince those who remain hesitant to get jabbed to fall in line and roll up their sleeves.

In a Saturday statement from the White House, Biden implored Americans to get double-vaxxed with a booster chaser before Pfizer-BioNTech have even brought their omicron vaccine to market, yet another jab that will soon be added to the list as the goalposts of what it means to be “fully vaccinated” continue to be shifted.

According to Biden, “First, for those Americans who are fully vaccinated against severe COVID illness – fortunately, for the vast majority of our adults — the best way to strengthen your protection is to get a booster shot, as soon as you are eligible. Boosters are approved for all adults over 18, six months past their vaccination and are available at 80,000 locations coast-to-coast. They are safe, free, and convenient. Get your booster shot now, so you can have this additional protection during the holiday season.”

The POTUS added, “Second, for those not yet fully vaccinated: get vaccinated today. This includes both children and adults. America is leading the world in vaccinating children ages 5-11, and has been vaccinating teens for many months now – but we need more Americans in all age groups to get this life-saving protection. If you have not gotten vaccinated, or have not taken your children to get vaccinated, now is the time.”

With the medical industrial complex thriving as never before and politicians able to use the virus and its myriad variations to imbue themselves with sweeping powers, there is no end to the vaccinations in sight and with each subsequent iteration, the idea of vaccine passports to keep track of the shots comes closer to reality.

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Chris Donaldson

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