London — British scientists worried on Monday that the COVID-19 vaccine being deployed in the UK may not be able to protect against new variants of the coronavirus that emerged in South Africa and spread internationally. I have stated.
Both the United Kingdom and South Africa have detected new, more contagious variants of the virus that causes COVID-19 in recent weeks, causing a surge in cases. British Health Minister Matt Hancock said on Monday that he was very worried about the variants identified in South Africa.
Simon Clarke, an associate professor of cell microbiology at the University of Reading, said that while both mutants have some new features in common, those found in South Africa “have some additional abruptness of concern. There is a mutation. “
He said that these included a broader change to a significant part of the virus known as the peplomer that the virus uses to infect human cells, “the effects of the immune response that the virus causes by the vaccine. It can be difficult to receive. “
Lawrence Young, a virologist and professor of molecular oncology at the University of Warwick, also said that South African variants have “multiple spike mutations.”
“The accumulation of more spike mutations in South African mutants is of greater concern and can lead to escape from immune protection,” he said.
Scientists, including BioNTech CEO Ugur Sahin and Oxford University professor of medicine John Bell, say they are testing the vaccine against the new variant and can make the necessary adjustments in about six weeks. I will.
The UK Public Health Service said there is currently no evidence to suggest that the COVID-19 vaccine is not protected from mutated viral variants. The UK Department of Health did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
The wealthiest countries in the world have begun vaccination of their populations to kill 1.8 million people and protect themselves from the diseases that have disrupted the world economy.
Currently, 60 vaccine candidates are in trial, including those already deployed from AstraZeneca and Oxford, Pfizer and BioNTech, Moderna, Sputnik V, Russia, and Sinofarm in China.
Scientists say both South African and British variants are associated with higher viral load. This means that the concentration of viral particles in the patient’s body will be high, which may contribute to the increase in infection.
Oxford’s Bell, who advises the UK government’s Vaccine Task Force, said on Sunday that he thought the vaccine would work in the UK variant, but there was a “big question” about whether it would work in the South African variant. ..
BioNTech’s Sahin told Germany Spiegel In an interview released Friday, they said their vaccine, which directs the human immune system to use messenger RNA to fight the virus, should be able to protect against British variants.
“We are testing whether the vaccine can neutralize this mutant and will soon find out more,” he said. — — Reuters
British scientists are worried that the vaccine may not be able to prevent South African coronavirus variants
https://www.bworldonline.com/uk-scientists-worry-vaccines-may-not-protect-against-south-african-coronavirus-variant/ British scientists are worried that the vaccine may not be able to prevent South African coronavirus variants