Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge
The Food and Drug Administration authorized the Novavax COVID-19 vaccine for people 18 and older, the fourth shot cleared in the United States. It’s been a long road for this vaccine, and the company faced multiple setbacks over the past few years.
It’s a different type of vaccine than the ones already on the market in the US — it’s a protein-based vaccine that delivers pieces of the virus spike protein directly to the body. Clinical trials found that the shot was 90 percent effective at preventing COVID-19. The trials, though, were conducted in early 2021 — before the delta and then omicron variants of the virus took over, so those numbers would likely be lower now.
Early on in the pandemic, experts thought that the Novavax vaccine…