Emerging evidence suggests new coronavirus variant could be problematic for vaccines

variant was first identified in South Africa in October and is now present in more than a dozen countries.

In both studies, the work was done in the laboratory and not in humans, so further research is needed to determine the true threat of the new variant.

In this small recent study, researchers collected antibodies from six people hospitalized with Covid-19 before the new variant was discovered. They found, to varying degrees, that the antibodies of the six survivors could not fully fight the virus.

I think there is new evidence that these mutations – and I think other mutations are emerging – around the world that avoid antibodies from previous infections, Alex Sigal, a virologist at the African Health Research Institute and the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology, told CNN. It’s about.

It is not clear whether this means that someone is susceptible to the new variant if they have already had Covid-19, or what this might mean for people who have been vaccinated.

Segal’s findings are very similar to a study released Tuesday by South Africa’s National Institute of Infectious Diseases.

When two groups independently come to the same basic answer, it’s a good thing – more agreement that they’re right, said Jesse Bloom, a virologist at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.

A third study, also published Tuesday, showed that mutations in the new variant allowed them to bypass some of the immunity caused by vaccination, but it was far from a complete escape.

This study examined a much smaller number of mutations per variant than the South African studies examined.

None of these studies are peer-reviewed or published in medical journals.

When scientists determine whether these variants are particularly dangerous – and research is being done in various labs around the world – one thing is clear: Get vaccinated if you can.

I certainly would if I could, Segal said. My father-in-law was able to fly to Israel to pick it up, and I got it out of the house because you can’t get it here in South Africa

Research Trio

In his study, Segal found that the antibodies in all six subjects were unable to fully fight the new variant.

One of the participants responded very well, but no one got away with it, he said.

The research was published on the website of CRISP, the KwaZulu-Natal Research, Innovation and Sequencing Platform. The other two studies were published on the pre-pressure server.

In a study with similar results, blood was collected from 44 people in South Africa who had Covid-19. Almost all of their cases were confirmed before September, that is, before this variant was observed in South Africa

The researchers then examined whether their antibodies would fight the new variant.

In about half of the 44 people, their antibodies were insufficient against the new variant. The other half of the antibody was attenuated, but not completely eliminated.

In the third study, conducted at Rockefeller University, researchers examined the blood of 20 people who had received the vaccine from Soverna or Pfizer. Various mutations in the viruses allowed some of them to escape certain types of antibodies, but the subjects’ immune systems launched an army of different types of antibodies against the viruses.

The Rockefeller study examined fewer mutations than the two South African studies. He looked at the three major mutations on the spikes at the top of the coronavirus, because that’s the part of the virus that vaccines target.

It’s a useful story, but not yet complete, said John Moore, a vaccine researcher at Weill Cornell Medicine.

However, South African studies have used the virus itself or its model with eight spike mutations.

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