The Com-COV 3 study has been commissioned through the NIHR and backed by £2.8 million government funding, with support from both the Vaccine Taskforce and National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR). This new stage of the study – which will look to enrol 380 volunteers – is funded entirely by the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and will run across nine NIHR-supported sites plus one Health and Care Research Wales site by the National Immunisation Schedule Evaluation Consortium (NISEC). All participants will have completed a two-dose schedule of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, at least three months before joining. Researchers will deliver a third vaccine dose as part of the study.
Matthew Snape, Professor in Paediatrics and Vaccinology at the University of Oxford, and Chief Investigator of the trial, said:
‘This study builds on the important results from previous Com-COV and COV-BOOST studies, which have directly informed the national and international use of mixed COVID-19 vaccine schedules. These studies have included teenagers receiving the first two vaccine doses.
‘A key question for teenagers now is how well they respond to different options for a third dose of vaccine. This includes giving a lower dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, or a protein-based vaccine produced by Novavax. If these can be shown to produce a strong immune response with fewer temporary side effects, then this could improve the acceptability and uptake of a third dose adolescent campaign, both in the UK and internationally.’