Weil Cornell Medicine-Qatar-led Study Reveals Waning mRNA COVID-19 Vaccine Efficacy

A study led by corresponding author Dr. Laith Abu-Raddad with Weil Cornell Medicine-Qatar in Education City Qatar investigated waning COVID-19 vaccine efficacy over a half year period. This vaccine immunity is of growing concern with mRNA COVID-19 vaccines, particularly in association with Pfizer-BioNTech’s BNT162b2 but also Modera’s mRNA-1273. In Qatar, the health authorities launched mass vaccination campaigns in response to SARS-CoV-2 starting in December 2020, first starting with BNT162b2 followed a few months later by use of mRNA-1273. With 2.95 million people, Qatar is one of the most immunized places in the world as fully-vaccinated rates hover around 80%. Leveraging a robust and comprehensive population-wide COVID-19 database, the Weill Cornell Medicine-Qatar-based study team employed a match-test-negative, case-control study often used in measuring influenza efficacy. The study team found that the protection against SARS-CoV-2 associated with the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine rapidly wanes following the peak after the second dose. However, the study authors inform that the vaccine does afford protection against hospitalization and death during six months after the second dose.

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