Another death in the Limanowa poviat. What we don’t know about Omicron?

14:52

WORLD
Virology experts around the world agree that a new variant of the coronavirus, dubbed Omikron and discovered in South Africa, poses another serious threat to the nearly two-year global coronavirus pandemic, CNN writes on Saturday. Lawrence Young, a virologist and professor of molecular oncology at Warwick Medical School in the UK, endorsed the World Health Organization (WHO) opinion that Omikron is “very worrying”. “

This is the most mutated version of the virus we have seen so far. This variant includes some changes that we’ve seen before in other variants, but never have all of these combinations been together in one virus. It also has new mutations, “Young wrote in a statement. He explained that Omikron has a total of about 50 mutations, and most importantly, according to studies by genomics scientists in South Africa, more than 30 of these mutations have been found in the spike protein, the structure the virus uses. to get to the cells under attack.

Neil Ferguson, director of the MRC Center for Global Infectious Disease Analysis at Imperial College London, said the number of mutations in the spike protein was “unprecedented.” “The spike protein gene is the target of most vaccines. There is therefore concern that this variant may have a greater potential than previous variants to avoid the immune barrier that vaccines are intended to provide,” Ferguson said.

Sharon Peacock, professor of public health and microbiology at the University of Cambridge, noted that while the overall number of Covid-19 cases is relatively low in South Africa, there has been a rapid increase in the last seven days – while 273 new infections were registered on November 16, the number this increased to over 1,200 cases on November 25, of which over 80 percent. discovered in Gauteng Province. ‘The epidemiological picture suggests that this variant may be much more infectious, which may be due to some mutations,’ Peacock wrote in a comment from the UK’s Science Media Center.

Tulio de Oliveira, director of South Africa’s Epidemic Response Center, also admitted that the new variant “has many more mutations than expected.” He added that “the virus is spreading very quickly and we can expect healthcare systems to be overloaded in the next few days and weeks.” Dr. Ashish Jha, dean of the US Department of Public Health, Brown University, said the new variant “behaves differently” and “appears to be much more contagious than the Delta variant.” “It quickly became dominant in South Africa where it was discovered. It happened in days, not months,” warned Jha.

CNN: What we don’t know about Omicron?
Peacock, de Oliveira, Ferguson and Jha agree that it is too early to determine the full impact of the Omikron variant mutation on vaccine efficacy. De Oliveira stressed that Covid-19 vaccines are still the best tool in the fight against the coronavirus and added that laboratory research should still be carried out to improve formulations. “I don’t think we will find ourselves in a situation where vaccines become useless,” Jha said. that preliminary data will be known in the next few days. ”

US vaccine manufacturer Moderna said on Friday that the combination of mutations seen in the new Omikron variant represents “a significant potential risk of hastening the decline of natural and vaccine-induced immunity.” The company said it has already started testing its vaccine’s ability to neutralize the new variant, and the results are expected in the coming weeks. In turn, AstraZeneca announced that it is testing a combination therapy of antibodies in the fight against the new variant, and a spokesman for the company assured that the current vaccine capabilities already allow it to react quickly to the new variants. “AstraZeneca is also conducting research in locations where a variant has been identified, namely Botswana and Eswatini. This will enable us to gather real data to develop a measure against the new variant,” the company said. Johnson & Johnson also announced that it is testing its vaccine against the new variant. CNN said it is not entirely clear where the new variant came from, according to the researchers, and although it was first identified in South Africa, it may have come from elsewhere. cases of the Omikron variant, mainly in South Africa and Botswana, AFP writes that this variant was also discovered in Malawi, Israel in a person who came from Malawi, Hong Kong and Belgium.

10:19

WORLD
Delta has overtaken other Covid-19 variants worldwide and has accounted for 99.8 percent in the past 60 days. any coronavirus infections – according to the latest weekly report of the World Health Organization (WHO).
A new variant of Covid-19 known as Omikron, recently detected in South Africa, has banned flights to and from parts of Africa and has resulted in vigorous research to determine the effectiveness of the vaccine against it.

There is also the Gamma variant, which is 0.1 percent. cases, as well as Alpha and Beta, each of which is less than 0.1 percent. Lesser known variants like Lambda and Mu are rare and not yet fully researched.

However, the WHO is of the opinion that there are regional and national differences where other variants predominate, e.g. in some South American countries where Delta spreads more slowly.

According to the researchers, the emergence of new variants is a natural process that occurs when the coronavirus mutates to ensure its survival. Most variants have little or no effect on the virus’s ability to infect or cause serious disease.

However, some variants can influence the ability to spread the virus, the severity of the disease they cause and how well the vaccine can respond to them.

WHO experts, who study the evolution of Covid-19, gathered on Friday to determine whether the new variant should be considered “disturbing” or “interesting”. They announced that it would take “several weeks” to determine how infectious Omikron was and how severe it could cause the disease.

Currently, only variants Alpha, Beta, Gamma and Delta have classified the WHO as “of concern”. Mu and Lambda are considered “interesting variants” as they show genetic changes potentially meaning they can become more infectious, harder to detect or cause serious disease.

The Delta variant is approximately twice as infectious as the other variants, and vaccines are approximately 40 percent less effective in preventing it than the other variants.


About Peter Wilson

In love with technology, with an eye towards smartphones, he does not disdain any activity linked to the Nerd world. TV series, movies, manga, anime, and comics (Marvel addicted) are the order of the day.

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