Has Johnson & Johnson Really Gotten it Right?

Written by: Kyler 

Edited by: Leela

Visual by: Yana

As new COVID variants spread, vaccines have become increasingly virulent as the United States readies their arsenal of vaccines, fostering the role of America’s most stalwart defenders. Pfzier, one of the earliest Covid vaccines having been approved and drafted into emergency use onDecember 11, 2020, uses a mechanism triggering the body to produce protective antibodies capable of combating Covid. Like most of the Covid vaccines, two doses are needed for maximum protection. Moderna ‘s vaccine was approved approximately a month after Pfzier’s. The final member of the “trinity” of America’s vaccine industry is the vaccine from Johnson and Jonhson but this one is a one shot magic bullet rather than the two each by Pfizer and Moderna.

  The Johnson & Johnson vaccine seems to excavate relics of America’s pharmaceutical past as the vaccine uses the same method as the decade-old ebola vaccine in stimulating an immune response in the body called viral-vectoring. The process involves the vaccine strapping on adenovirus, previously implemented in ebola. It seems as though international vaccine brands such as the Russian Sputnik V. and the Chinese Cansino Biologics vaccine are both Johnson & Johnson buffs as they too use this viral-vectoring method. Additionally, the Johnson & Johnson vaccine provides protection faster than other rival vaccines seeing improvements two weeks after vaccination. However, this is not to say the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is ineffective as it boasts a 72% efficacy rate in preventing moderate COVID symptoms and 85% for more lethal ramifications. Despite Johnson & Johnson’s 22% decrease in efficacy as compared to Pfizer & Moderna, director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Dr. Anthony Fauci believes that it is at a high enough efficacy for it to be a viable lifesaver.  Many other credible names such as Dr. James McDeavitt, dean of clinical affairs at the Baylor College of Medicine and Dr. Danny Avula, vaccine administrator of Virginia, unanimously agree. Johnson & Johnson’s success rate is further enhanced by an absence of side effects or allergic reactions on 44,000 people hailing from the Americas. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine does not pose any storage difficulties as it can be left in usual refrigerator temperatures for two to three months and in a freezer temperature for up to two years. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is especially attractive; due to its aforementioned single-dose nature, it is easily accessible to a rural population or people who live in remote areas as it alleviates the requirement for a second shot.

 Thus, Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine is cheaper, easier to store and transport, and needs no follow-up. It’s  akin to a “plug and play” device but no matter what one refers to the Johnson & Johnson vaccine as, it is the only convenient “magic bullet” out there. Maybe Johnson & Johnson is the only one who really got its vaccine right?

Works cited:

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Vaccine For U.S.”. Nytimes.Com, 2021, https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/27/health/covid-vaccine-johnson-and-johnson.html. Accessed 3 Mar 2021.

Newburger, Emma. “Fauci Says All Three Covid Vaccines Highly Effective, Urges People To 

Take Shot Most Available”. Cnbc.com, 2021, https://www.cnbc.com/2021/02/28/fauci-all-three-covid-vaccines-highly-effective-urges-people-to-take-available-shot.html. Accessed 4 Mar 2021.

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Maggie Fox, CNN. “How J&J’s Coronavirus Vaccine Is Different From The Others”. CNN, 2021, 

https://edition.cnn.com/2021/02/27/health/johnson-johnson-coronavirus-vaccine-explainer/index.html. Accessed 7 Mar 2021.

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n-in-battle-against-covid/ar-BB1e5L1c. Accessed 7 Mar 2021.