Upstate Medical University in Syracuse is one of four sites in the world to begin conducting trials on the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine in children under the age of 5.
“Locally, here in Syracuse, there was a child for a brief period of time that was the youngest person in the entire world who had gotten a coronavirus vaccine. Pretty amazing," said Pfizer Pediatric Trial Principal Investigator Dr. Joe Domachowske.
That child was 4 years old and part of the pediatric Pfzier trials happening at Upstate.
What You Need To Know
- Upstate Medical University in Syracuse is one of four sites in the world to begin conducting trials on the Pfizer vaccine in kids under 5
- Doctors leading the trials say for a short time the youngest child in the world was vaccinated in Syracuse: A 4-year-old
- Upstate officials say more than 500 families have shown interest in participating in the trial and the limited amount of slots have been filled
Dr. Domachowske is the principal investigator for the trials and also worked on vaccine trials for kids aged 12-15.
“Now we need to know what the correct dose is that will be equally safe and equally effective in the younger age groups,” said Domachowske.
This trial will be broken up into three different phases. In the first and current phase, kids will be given a vaccine that’s one-third of the adult dosage. Kids in this phase will all receive the vaccine.
“The lipid particles in the vaccine do cause most of the side effects adults are aware of," Domachowske said. "The side effects are pretty common and mild and go away pretty quickly. If we give that same dose to a younger child, it may be that it might be a little too much in the way of side effects and we want to use a lower dose."
Phase one of the trials is expected to finish in May. The second and third phases will measure efficacy and introduce placebo vaccines. Those phases will study more than 4,000 kids at more than 100 test sites.
“Once we know that we can use the vaccine to help improve our overcall community immunity, reduce transmission from people who are minimally symptomatic or asymptomatic in the pediatric population to other people in their homes or people in the community they might be exposed to,” said Domachowske.
Dr. Domachowske said children tend to have milder symptoms, but the vaccine will help prevent post COVID-19 complications that have been seen in some children.
Upstate officials said more than 500 families have shown interest in participating in the trial and the limited amount of slots have already been filled.