New Pfizer trial shows vaccine 100% effective in teens 12-15

Infectious disease specialist Onyema Ogbuagu discusses the latest trial results.
5:06 | 04/07/21

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Transcript for New Pfizer trial shows vaccine 100% effective in teens 12-15
there is some promising news on the vaccine front with pfizer announcing recent clinical trials data shows that its covid-19 vaccine is safe and 100% effective against the virus in children ages 12 to 15 years old. So let's discuss the findings. Let's do that with the trial's principal investigator at Yale school of medicine, Dr. Onyema ogbuagu. Sir, good to see you once again with us. So tell us, how is this different, or is it different, how you handle a vaccine trial dealing with children, than you would with the adults. Yes, good point. You know, children are a little different than adults, when it comes to clinical trials and there are certainly protections in place regarding children, and so typically, what we do when we're working with children in trials is we involve their parents, we get consent from their parents, and we also get ascent from the kids, which means they have to express some basic understanding of what the clinical trial is and also provide an express interest in participating in it. And I've got to tell you, you know, having interacted with the kids, just the level of enthusiasm, both the parents and the kids had to participate in this study, was just incredible. And I think riding on the heels of how well the vaccines performed in older adults I think made the conversation so much easier. That is certainly good news. My youngest is 14, so I know she's anxiously awaiting her turn to get her shot. So do we know, do we have any idea, as to when the fda might approve this vaccine in children ages 12 to 15? So the pfizer vaccine is now a known commodity, I mean it's authorized for adults, we now have robust real world experience with how safe and effective the vaccines are, so I think those should factor in favorably to the fda's review of the clinical trial data. We're currently putting that data together to send to the fda for an extension of the data in kids age 12 to 15. And so that hopefully happens in the upcoming weeks. Protecting kids against the variants we're seeing as well? Well, we know from the adult study, we just released top line data from the six months follow-up from the survey in adults and we see that even for the most feared 501.v2 south Africa variant, that the vaccine did excellently protecting against disease from that variant. And we also have in vitro data showing that the vaccine should work on the b1.1.7 variant identified in the U.K. So I think for the pfizer vaccine for now I think we're good. And we're obviously seeing more and more adults being vaccinate and hopefully teens will be able to stand in line as well. What does this all mean for fully getting back to normal, reopening schools, doing all of the things that kids love to do with sports activities, et cetera, what does that do to that time line? Yes, I think we all have to acknowledge the toll its had on kids, I think their perception is that kids don't die as much as adults, such that it is much more benign disease in kids which is a good thing, but it has affected their social well-being, their mental and emotional health and also kept them from physical activities that are critically important, so having them being able to vaccinate will be critically important to resume normalcy. The truth is you can actually open schools safely just by observinpublic health measures, but I think the vaccine could be that extra level of confidence and protection that allows kids to truly resume normal life in the school setting, coming up soon. But for now, the middle school, high school-aged kids for now, and the data for much younger kids will probably be many, many months down the way. Doctor, we've been talking to you the past year about these vaccines and trials and you always give it to us straight and give us the facts and we are getting that smile from you and what does it mean, it has been a long road, a long year, and to this point now we're testing the vaccine in kids, just personally, man, have you had a rah-rah moment celebrated at all, or just taken a personal moment to reflect on where we are now? Yeah, it's been a long road frankly, and I also have twins who turned 13 in September, and sorry, last Saturday, sorry. Forget your kids' birthday. But again, yes, but on a personal note, it's great that my kids could also, you know, potentially in the near future receive a vaccine that can allow them to resume normalcy. And frankly, I think in the field we're starting to see light at the end of the tunnel, that, as we continue to ramp up vaccinations, that's certainly the pathway by which we get to the end of the pandemic, and resuming normalcy. So I think it's a lot of exhaustion, a lot of work, but a lot of hope at this time that things will be brighter soon. Well, thank you for all that you have done, that you are continuing to do, Dr. Onyema ogbuagu, thank you so much for being with us. It's my pleasure. Thanks for having me.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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