Moderna CEO Stéphane Bancel said during a Thursday morning interview with Fox Business Network anchor Maria Bartiromo that the COVID-19 booster shot could cause a 42 times increase in the number of antibodies for a person that has been fully vaccinated.
Bartiromo noted that Bancel claimed the booster shot had produced a “robust immune response against the Delta variant.” The Fox Business host cited Dr. Ben Carson, a guest that appeared on the show last week, who said that the Delta variant is very contagious but isn’t as severe or harmful as people believe. (RELATED: Obama Planning Massive Birthday Celebration Amid Delta Variant Concerns)
Bancel responded that there is still a lot to learn about the new variant but hospitalizations are increasing across the country.
“So we’re still learning a lot,” Bancel said. “It’s clearly very contagious versus the old strain. We have hospitalization going up, you know, in many places in the country. Especially places that are unvaccinated.”
“What I can tell you is the data we are now seeing this morning is if you give a full dose of the Moderna vaccine, you see … 42 times increase in antibodies with the same vaccine as a full dose compared to the level of antibody after the second dose,” he added. “So we think we have the tools to be here to help and to continue to keep Americans safe so that we can run the economy and kids can go to school.”
The CEO said that they are waiting on more data to decide which booster shot is most effective against the different variants, but said that some countries may choose to start giving booster shots to the elderly.
Former FDA commissioner Scott Gottlieb said that the booster shots could be given to the elderly and immunocompromised as early as September.