Johnson & Johnson: single-dose vaccine candidate is 72% effective in US

Daniel Fowler
January 31, 2021

Johnson and Johnson says its single-shot vaccine provides strong protection against severe cases of COVID-19, but it is somewhat less effective overall than the two mRNA vaccines now in use. As of Thursday, only about 1.3% of Americans had been fully vaccinated with the required two doses of the now available vaccines.

In clinical trials, the Novavax jab showed an overall efficacy of 90 percent against COVID-19, as well as 86 percent protection against the variant first found in the United Kingdom and 60 percent protection against the strain discovered in South Africa.

The efficacy rate of Janssen's vaccine is lower than the 94-95% effective Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines already authorized in the USA, but investigators said there are key differences that make Janssen's vaccine valuable. It said the candidate demonstrated "complete protection" against Covid-related hospitalization and death, 28 days post-vaccination.

Right now, the COVID vaccines are not approved for use in children under 16, but testing is underway to make sure they are safe and effective in kids.

The Janssen vaccine could also ease distribution challenges.

That's not even enough to have even the most vulnerable groups protected, and states say they are running out of doses to give, while manufacturers are working flat-out to make more.

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Johnson & Johnson says a panel of experts has reported no major safety concerns, adding that it has received no reports of anaphylactic reactions.

The viral vector vaccine uses a delivery method called AdVac that has been previously approved in a vaccine against Ebola and used in investigational vaccines for HIV and Zika. Moderna's trial for ages 12-17 is still recruiting.

The new vaccine from J&J is also cheaper, easier to manufacture and store, and quicker to administer (just one shot) when compared to Pfizer and Moderna's. However, there were no cases of anaphylaxis detected in those trials either; the rare cases began emerging once the vaccines hit the market.

Dr. Ramers said we will have to wait to see if the Johnson and Johnson vaccine triggers any cases, but it does not contain the fatty lipid bubble.

The team had six doses of the COVID-19 vaccine left but with the snow, they wouldn't be able to get back before they expired.

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