Japan’s Takeda applies for gov’t approval of Moderna’s booster shots

Nov 12 , 2021. 9 hours ago – 00:11 KYODO NEWS

Photo taken May 24, 2021, shows a syringe being filled with COVID-19 vaccine developed by Moderna Inc. in Sendai, northeastern Japan. (Kyodo) ==Kyodo

TOKYO – Japan’s Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. has applied with the health ministry for approval to use the COVID-19 vaccine developed by U.S. biotechnology firm Moderna Inc. for booster shots from February, company officials said Thursday.

Takeda, which is in charge of sales and distribution of the Moderna vaccine in Japan, submitted the application on Wednesday seeking the green light for the amount to be used and the method in administering it. Clinical trial data were also presented.

A government subcommittee of health experts will discuss the use of the vaccine as a booster shot in late December at the earliest, with Takeda planning to start administering the vaccine at workplaces from March.

In its clinical trial, Moderna gave 0.25 milliliters for a third dose — half of the amount it used for the first two shots, which was 0.5 ml for each — after a period of over six months since the second shot was administered.

The move came after a health ministry panel approved Wednesday the administration of third booster shots of U.S. pharmaceutical giant Pfizer Inc.’s vaccine to people aged 18 and over, starting with medical personnel from December.

Following the panel’s approval, the ministry also gave the nod for the vaccine’s use as booster shots on Thursday.

Cr.KYODO NEWS