COVID-19: VACCINE WATCH

Pfizer provides FDA vaccine data from kids ages 5-11

Sep 28, 2021, 1:12 PM | Updated: 1:13 pm
FILE - In this Tuesday, May 11, 2021 file photo, Dr. Peter Marks, director of the Center for Biolog...
FILE - In this Tuesday, May 11, 2021 file photo, Dr. Peter Marks, director of the Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research in the Food and Drug Administration, testifies during a Senate health, education, labor, and pensions hearing to examine an update from federal officials on efforts to combat COVID-19 on Capitol Hill in Washington. On Friday, Sept. 10, 2021, Marks urged parents to be patient, saying the agency will rapidly evaluate vaccines for 5- to 11-year-olds as soon as it gets the needed data. (Jim Lo Scalzo/Pool via AP)
(Jim Lo Scalzo/Pool via AP)

NEW YORK — Pfizer has submitted research to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on the effectiveness of its COVID-19 vaccine in children as it moves closer to seeking approval for expanded use of the shots.

The drugmaker and its partner, Germany’s BioNTech, say they expect to request emergency use authorization of their vaccine in children ages 5 to 11 “in the coming weeks.” The companies also plan to submit data to the European Medicines Agency and other regulators.

The two-shot Pfizer vaccine is currently available for those 12 and older. An estimated 100 million people in the U.S. have been fully vaccinated with it, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Pfizer tested a lower dose of the shots in children. The drugmaker said last week that researchers found the vaccine developed coronavirus-fighting antibody levels in children that were just as strong as those found in teenagers and young adults getting regular-strength doses.

Earlier this month, FDA chief Dr. Peter Marks told the AP that once Pfizer turns over its study results, his agency would evaluate the data “hopefully in a matter of weeks” to decide if the shots are safe and effective enough for younger kids.

Another U.S. vaccine maker, Moderna, also is studying its shots in elementary school-aged children. Results are expected later in the year.

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See all of AP’s pandemic coverage at https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic

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Pfizer provides FDA vaccine data from kids ages 5-11