Novavax vaccine crosses the finish line (almost) with CDC recommendation

Gaithersburg, Maryland-based Novavax is now one step away from all approvals needed for use of its COVID-19 vaccine in the U.S., following a recommendation from a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention panel.

The CDC panel issued its unanimous 12-0 vote in favor of recommending the COVID vaccine Tuesday afternoon. It follows final Food and Drug Administration approval last week.

The final step is now for CDC Director Rochelle Walensky to accept the panel’s recommendation, which is expected quickly.

The Novavax vaccine is already cleared for use and being distributed in several other countries.

It is the fourth available COVID vaccine in the U.S., and while its approval comes more than a year after others, it is a traditional protein-based vaccine that Novavax believes may appeal to some people who have not yet been vaccinated, because of hesitance about the safety of the other mRNA-based vaccines.

The FDA and CDC maintain the mRNA vaccines are safe and effective.

Separately Tuesday, Novavax said it had signed agreements with SK Biosciences for the manufacturing of a newer version of its COVID-19 vaccine that contains the Omicron variant. It will be distributed in pre-filled syringes, not multi-use vials, beginning next year.

Jeff Clabaugh

Jeff Clabaugh has spent 20 years covering the Washington region's economy and financial markets for WTOP as part of a partnership with the Washington Business Journal, and officially joined the WTOP newsroom staff in January 2016.

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