EU regulator backs Omicron-adapted jab

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The EU's drug regulator has backed two separate COVID-19 vaccine boosters updated to target the Omicron variant and developed by rivals Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech, as the region readies to roll out shots to ward off winter infections.

The new so-called bivalent shots combat the BA.1 version of Omicron and the original virus first detected in China.

The recommendations are for people aged 12 years and above who have received at least primary vaccination against COVID-19, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) said on Thursday.

The final go-ahead will be subject to European Commission approval, which should come in fairly quickly.