COVID-19 Round-Up: Vaccine Advisers Recommend Authorization of Moderna’s COVID Booster; and More

FDA Vaccine Advisers Meeting to Discuss J&J’s Booster Request

Advisers to the US FDA are being asked to suggest two possible timepoints for giving Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine booster doses. The company is requesting the FDA for emergency use authorization for a booster for everyone 18 and older who received its one-dose vaccine. J&J notes that while the efficacy of its vaccine has not waned much, it says data show that a booster augments protection up to 94%, per the CNN report.

Vaccine Advisers Vote to Recommend Moderna’s COVID-19 Booster Shots

On Thursday, vaccine advisers to the US FDA voted unanimously to recommend emergency use authorization of a booster dose of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine. The FDA’s Vaccine and Related Biological Products Advisory Board concurred that taking a booster and is safe and effective in some individuals six months following their primary series of shots, per a CNN report.

Obesity May Up Length of Stay, Mortality for COVID-19 Patients in ICU

A high body mass index (BMI) is associated with a higher risk for death and prolonged length of stay (LOS) in the intensive care unit (ICU) among patients with COVID-19, according to a study published online Oct. 13 in PLOS ONE.

Lovisa Sjögren, from University of Gothenburg in Sweden, and colleagues used data from the Swedish Intensive Care Registry to identify 1,649 COVID-19 patients admitted to ICUs to determine whether a high BMI affects the risk for death or prolonged LOS.

The researchers found a significant association between BMI and the risk for the composite outcome of death or LOS ≥14 days in survivors (odds ratio [OR] per standard deviation [SD] increase, 1.30), when adjusting for sex, age, and comorbidities. This association remained after further adjusting for severity of illness at ICU admission (OR, 1.30 per SD). Individuals with a BMI ≥35 kg/m2 had a twofold higher risk for the composite of death or LOS ≥14 days. There was also an association between a high BMI and death during intensive care and a prolonged LOS in survivors assessed as separate outcomes.