Clinical Trial to Commence Testing COVID Booster Shot in Participants Who Are Immunocompromised and Living with Autoimmune Disease

July 6, 2021

Pfizer is planning a clinical trial on the efficacy of a third vaccine to boost the creation of antibodies in immunocompromised individuals. This trial will include 360 participants who are ages 2+ and immunocompromised (to include those on immunomodulator therapy for autoimmune disease).

Those on immunotherapies are particularly vulnerable to complications due to COVID-19 infection; however, this population group is often unable to produce detectible antibodies after a full dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. This will be the first study including those who are immunocompromised or living with an autoimmune disease to see if antibody production increases after a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Clinical observations of patients getting a third dose show seemingly impressive antibody production but must be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Around 5% of the US population is considered to be immunocompromised. While organ transplant and cancer patients have been a focus of COVID-19 and vaccine research, those taking Rituximab, corticosteroids, and methotrexate – often taken by those living with certain autoimmune diseases – may be resistant to protection from the COVID-19 vaccine.
The clinical trial is estimated to begin in September 2021 and conclude in January 2023.

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