Pfizer and BioNTech are set to ask the Food and Drug Administration to give authorization to its coronavirus booster shot for 16- and 17-year-olds in the coming days.
The Washington Post reports that the FDA regulators are expected to sign off on the authorization quickly, according to two people familiar with the situation, both of whom requested anonymity because they did not have permission to discuss it.
Presently, people 18 and up are able to receive boosters six months after receiving the second dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccines, or two months after the single shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
Regulators have been more cautious about boosters for younger people due to both the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines having been correlated with a possible side effect of myocarditis, a swelling of the heart muscle, in young men. However, recent data from Israel on boosters have given reassurance to regulators about authorizing them for this age group. The Israeli studies have shown that myocarditis is uncommon and that cases tend to be mild.
Federal regulators have been expanding the amount of people eligible for boosters recently. Last month, the FDA authorized the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna boosters for those 18 and older, and authorized the Johnson & Johnson booster for that age group earlier.
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