(WFXR) — Moderna has recently started testing booster shots targeting the omicron variant of the coronavirus.

This research comes amid increased pressure to get more Americans boosted against COVID-19.

The company announced on Wednesday, Jan. 26 that the first participant has been dosed in the Phase 2 study of the omicron-specific booster candidate

Data on the current Moderna vaccine shows it fades in strength over time, but it still provides protection six months after the booster.

“We are reassured by the antibody persistence against Omicron at six months after the currently authorized 50 µg booster of mRNA-1273. Nonetheless, given the long-term threat demonstrated by Omicron’s immune escape, we are advancing our Omicron-specific variant vaccine booster candidate and we are pleased to begin this part of our Phase 2 study,” said Stéphane Bancel, Chief Executive Officer of Moderna, in Wednesday’s announcement about testing the omicron-specific booster. “We are also evaluating whether to include this Omicron-specific candidate in our multivalent booster program. We will continue to share data with public health authorities to help them make evidence-based decisions on the best booster strategies against SARS-CoV-2.”

Moderna’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Paul Burton, joined WFXR News on Thursday, Jan. 27 to discuss the impact of booster shots in the battle against COVID-19.

Burton addressed the future of the pandemic, the difference between doses and the primary series of shots, the current data about the protection of boosters against omicron, and combating concerns from unvaccinated adults.