“I think this frankly was always a two-dose vaccine,” said Dr. Paul Offitt, an infectious disease expert at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

The Food and Drug Administration’s vaccine advisory panel unanimously voted on Friday to recommend authorizing booster shots of Johnson & Johnson’s one-dose coronavirus vaccine for people 18 years or older, at least two months after the first dose, The New York Times reports. The F.D.A. typically follows the panel’s advice.

Before the vote, a top agency official, Dr. Peter Marks, said that the agency might consider regulatory action that would allow Johnson & Johnson recipients to receive a booster shot of Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech’s vaccines. But Dr. Marks, who oversees the F.D.A.’s vaccine division, gave no timetable for any decision, saying only that authorization of a different vaccine as a booster for Johnson & Johnson recipients was “possible.”

Many panel members said that a second dose was important because the first dose did not provide strong enough protection. Unlike the other vaccines available in the United States, Johnson & Johnson chose to seek authorization for a single dose — a decision that some committee members couched as a mistake in hindsight.

“I think this frankly was always a two-dose vaccine,” said Dr. Paul Offitt, an infectious disease expert at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

Johnson & Johnson representatives presented their case Friday morning during a meeting of the advisory panel, arguing that a second dose given either two months or six months after the first shot increased antibody levels, part of the immune response to vaccines. They also said that the single dose remained durable.

 

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