Stephanie Armour, Jared S. Hopkins
The Food and Drug Administration could authorize COVID-19 boosters from Pfizer Inc. /zigman2/quotes/202877789/composite PFE -1.04% and BioNTech SE /zigman2/quotes/214419716/composite BNTX +0.79% 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.
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