On Friday, a panel of advisers will meet to evaluate the vaccine and make a recommendation about whether it should be given the okay. If the agency goes on to authorize the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, it would be the third, to be become available in the U.S.
The Johnson & Johnson vaccine has some advantages. Immunization with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine requires only one shot, unlike the two-shot dosing for the vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine also doesn’t require special refrigeration for shipment and storage.
The FDA review noted that an international study of about 40,000 people, half of whom got the vaccine and half of whom got a placebo, found the company’s vaccine to be 66% effective overall in preventing moderate to severe COVID-19 disease. The study was conducted in the U.S., Latin America and South Africa.