MANILA - The Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday said it would be good to have a "basket of choices" of COVID-19 vaccines as some may experience more adverse effects from the inoculation.
Those with severe allergies may not be compatible with the mRNA (messenger RNA) vaccines of Pfizer and Moderna, according to FDA director general Eric Domingo.
"The mRNA vaccine is completely laboratory-synthesized. That’s why they can do it a lot weaker and cheaper. There’s this possibility of getting an allergic reaction, possible severe allergic reaction so yun talaga ang (that's really what) we have to watch out for. Pag meron ka (If you have) severe allergy maybe this is not for you," he told ANC's Headstart.
"For each and every patient you have to find a better vaccine for you and not one vaccine is probably good for everybody so it’s good to have a basket of choices."
The FDA will publish the list of vaccines granted emergency use authorization so the public can ask their doctors if there is an ingredient they are allergic to, Domingo said.
The country has so far given EUAs to the vaccine candidates of Pfizer and AstraZeneca. AstraZeneca's inoculation, a viral vector vaccine, is not "as allergenic" as an mRNA vaccine, according to Domingo.
An mRNA vaccine uses a molecule containing the genetic material of the virus which instructs the body to create spike proteins that triggers immune response.
A viral vector vaccine, meantime, uses a harmless virus to carry the material of the SARS-CoV2 to trigger the immune system.
Inactivated virus vaccines, such as the candidates of Chinese drugmakers Sinovac and Sinopharm, are "tried and tested vehicles" which has been used for decades, Domingo said.
"The safety profile is quite well known. We just have to check if the efficacy rate is useful. We’ll probably need all of them to fight COVID-19," he said.
The FDA is still evaluating the EUA applications of Sinovac, India's Bharat Biotech, and Russia's Gamaleya, he added.