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Another Dose for Immunocompromised Considered

An advisory panel in the US is to weigh whether individuals with compromised immune systems should be able to receive an additional SARS-CoV-2 vaccine dose, according to the Washington Post.

Pfizer and BioNTech last week announced they were testing a booster of its SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, which they said leads to a 5- to 10-fold increase in neutralization titers. Officials from the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, though, said there was not enough data to support the need for a booster.

This CDC advisory panel, the Post notes, will focus on the portion of the population that is immunocompromised, such as individuals with cancer, organ transplant recipients, and people with HIV. Some immunocompromised individuals may not have had as robust a response to vaccination as healthy individuals, it adds, and an additional vaccine dose might increase that response and their protection.

The data there might be mixed, according to the Post. Massachusetts General Hospital's Camille Kotton tells it that organ transplant patients appear to have a lower response to vaccine, suggesting that another dose maybe warranted but Tufts Medical Center's Helen Boucher tells it she has not seen any data supporting additional doses for anyone, including the immunocompromised.

The Scan

Purnell Choppin Dies

Purnell Choppin, a virologist who led the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, has died at 91, according to the Washington Post.

Effectiveness May Decline, Data From Israel Suggests

The New York Times reports that new Israeli data suggests a decline in Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine effectiveness against Delta variant infection, though protection against severe disease remains high.

To See Future Risk

Slate looks into the use of polygenic risk scores in embryo screening.

PLOS Papers on Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus, Bone Marrow Smear Sequencing, More

In PLOS this week: genomic analysis of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus pseudintermedius, archived bone marrow sequencing, and more.