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The Wall Street Journal

Nov. 29, 2021, 8:52 p.m. EST

FDA may OK COVID boosters for 16- and 17-year-olds as soon as next week

Stephanie Armour, Jared S. Hopkins

The Food and Drug Administration could authorize COVID-19 boosters from Pfizer Inc. (NYS:PFE)  and BioNTech SE (NAS:BNTX)  for use in 16- and 17-year-olds as soon as next week as concerns rise over a new, possibly more transmissible variant, according to a person familiar with the planning.

The agency is planning to move rapidly to take action on a request by the companies to authorize boosters for 16- and-17-year-olds, according to a person familiar with the matter. So far, only people  18 years and older are eligible for boosters .

Pressure has been mounting on the Biden administration to authorize boosters, especially in light of the  emergence of omicron , a new variant with a worrying constellation of mutations that could reduce the efficacy of vaccines.

Vaccine makers have begun  racing to assess whether their shots work as well against omicron  as against other variants, or whether they will need to modify the doses to target the new strain.

An expanded version of this report appears on WSJ.com.

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