Moderna or Pfizer or J&J? The new reports generated after several successful vaccinations have identified the best vaccine of all.
Which Vaccine Should You Get?
This has been the question hanging above all our heads since the beginning of this year. Several vaccines with several symptoms and side effects had instilled the fear of facing something more threatening than the COVID-19 infection. The CDC’s disapproval of a few vaccines approved by WHO has pushed several immigrants, resident/non-resident aliens, and foreigners trying to visit the U.S. post the lockdown into turmoil.
Often vaccines undergo numerous trial stages before being introduced into the market. This was not how the COVID-19 vaccines came to be. The vaccines that were capable of eliminating the pandemic were immediately approved. The long-term side effects and other complications were only tested to an extent.
With the increasing number of vaccinated individuals, researchers have shed light on the after-effects of being vaccinated with specific vaccines. Here are our 2 cents to help you choose between Moderna or Pfizer, or J&J if you are still not vaccinated.
Moderna or Pfizer
Let see their characteristics first:
- Contents: They are both mRNA vaccines. mRNA (Messenger RNA) vaccines instruct the immune system to develop S proteins (Antibodies) to fight against a particular infection when the immunity comes in contact with the coronavirus.
- Age: Moderna vaccines can be administered to anyone above 18 years. Pfizer can be administered to individuals above 12 years of age.
- Doses: Two doses each. The second Moderna shot is given after 3 weeks. The second Pfizer shot is given after 4 weeks following the first dose. Individuals are considered completely vaccinated after 2 weeks of getting the final dosage for both vaccines.
- Cost: The FDA does provide free vaccines but Moderna costs around $15.5o per jab and one jab of Pfizer costs around $19.50.
- Symptoms: Both have the same symptoms: weakness, tiredness, muscle pain, headache, nausea, chills, fever, etc.
Moderna or Pfizer is the first doubt that pops into the mind when thinking about getting vaccinated.
A study published in JAMA has identified Moderna produced double the quantity of antibodies than Pfizer. The study tested 1647 vaccinated individuals who worked at the Belgium hospital systems.
The blood samples were collected after being vaccinated for 6-10 weeks from participants who did not consume immunosuppressants. The key takeaway from the study by David Benkeser, a biostatistician at Emory University, is:
|Vaccine Type||Not Infected||Previously Infected|
|Moderna||2,881 units of antibodies per milliliter.||3,836 units of antibodies per milliliter.|
|Pfizer||1,108 units of antibodies per milliliter.||1,444 units of antibodies per milliliter.|
Researchers speculate the difference is due to the time gap between the doses and the active ingredient in the vaccines. While Moderna has 100 micrograms, Pfizer has only 30 micrograms of the active ingredient. Though Moderna vaccines show increased production of antibodies, researchers are still researching the efficacy of these increased antibodies. Currently, Moderna is considered the best choice for individuals on immunosuppressants.
Moderna or Pfizer or Johnson & Johnson (Janssen)
- Contents: The Johnson and Johnson vaccine is a viral vector vaccine. A modified virus containing a dormant coronavirus will be injected into the system to amplify the antibodies.
- Age: 18 years and above.
- Dose: You will need only one dosage of the Jhonson and Jhonson vaccine to be considered fully vaccinated after 2 weeks of being jabbed.
- Cost: They are also available for free. One dose costs around $10 in private hospitals.
- Symptoms: They have the same symptoms as Moderns or Pfizer.
The booster dose for J&J is still under trial. While the other two are ready to deliver booster shots. The Janssen vaccines were invented when the Beta variant emerged. Thus, researchers hypothesize that J&J could be more effective against newer variants. No definite studies are indicating this yet. The single-shot vaccine has shown around 66% efficacy in individuals who exhibited COVID-19 symptoms and severe infection.
According to the FDA, all three vaccines completely prevent hospitalization and COVID deaths. Researchers are interested in Moderna or Pfizer due to the large number of U.S. citizens vaccinated with them.