People are running around this Fall season asking “Should I take the flu shot AND the Covid vaccine?”
Turns out, Pfizer and BioNTech SE are working on the advancement of an mRNA-based combination vaccine candidate for influenza and COVID-19 to a Phase 1 trial with the aim to address two severe respiratory diseases with one vaccine.
Kill two birds with one stone, if you will.
The first participant has been dosed in a Phase 1 trial evaluating the safety, tolerability, and immunogenicity of a nucleoside-modified RNA (modRNA)-based combination vaccine approach.
The vaccine candidate combines Pfizer’s quadrivalent modRNA-based influenza vaccine candidate, qIRV (22/23), which is currently in Phase 3 clinical development, and Pfizer and BioNTech’s authorized Omicron-adapted bivalent COVID-19 BNT162b2 (Original/Omicron BA.4/BA.5) vaccine, each of which is based on BioNTech’s proprietary mRNA platform technology.
“The flexibility and manufacturing speed of the mRNA technology has demonstrated that it is well-suited for other respiratory diseases. Pfizer is deeply proud of our continued work to explore its potential to protect against influenza and COVID-19 in one combination vaccine, which we think could simplify immunization practices against these two respiratory pathogens, potentially leading to better vaccine uptake for both diseases,” said Annaliesa Anderson, Ph.D., Senior Vice President and Chief Scientific Officer, Vaccine Research and Development, Pfizer. “Even with existing seasonal influenza vaccines, the burden of this virus is severe across the world causing thousands of deaths and hospitalizations every year. This is an exciting step in our ongoing journey with BioNTech as we collectively look to transform the prevention of infectious diseases around the world.”
“By combining both indications in one vaccine approach, we aim to provide individuals with an efficient way to receive immunization against two severe respiratory diseases with evolving viruses that require vaccine adaptation,” said Prof. Ugur Sahin, M.D., CEO and Co-founder of BioNTech. “The data will also provide us with more insights on the potential of mRNA vaccines addressing more than one pathogen. This will help us to further develop our infectious disease pipeline to deliver on patient centric vaccination approaches.”