The CDC now recommends Americans get the messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines produced by Pfizer and Moderna instead of the andenovector Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which scientists have linked to rare but serious blood clots.
Unlike Pfizer and Moderna, Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine doesn’t use mRNA to build up your body’s natural defense against the virus. Instead, Johnson & Johnson’s researchers added the coronavirus’ signature spike protein to an adenovirus. Adenovirus is a common virus that causes cold or flu-like symptoms. The modified adenovirus used by J&J can enter your body’s cells, deliver instructions for them to make the spike protein found in COVID-19 which causes the immune system to produce antibodies that attack it. Your immune system now has a plan of attack if you contract COVID-19.
However, the nine deaths attributed to J&J’s vaccine have led the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices to vote to recommend the Pfizer or Moderna shots unanimously.
As Fox Business reports:
“More than 200 million Americans have completed their primary vaccine series, providing protection against COVID-19, preventing millions of cases and hospitalizations, and saving over a million lives,” CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said in a statement. “Today’s updated recommendation emphasizes CDC’s commitment to provide real-time scientific information to the American public.”
Women between the ages of 30 and 49 are most affected by the blood clotting issue at a rate of about 1 in 100,000 shots.
Some doctors admitted they were surprised by the CDC’s recommendation, when asked by West Palm Beach’s CBS12 News:
“I was, in that initially,” said Chief Medical Officer of Tampa General Hospital Dr. Peggy Duggan. “We expected to continue to use J&J, like Moderna and Pfizer for boosters.”
“I think we knew from before, the two doses of Pfizer and Moderna give you a better response than Johnson & Johnson,” said Infectious Disease Specialist Dr. Olayemi Osiyemi.