Study shows Pfizer vaccine protects less against…

© ROBIN UTRECHT

Pfizer’s vaccine is said to protect less well against omikron than against previous variants of the corona virus. This is apparent from an initial, albeit small-scale, study into the new variant. “The ability to escape vaccine antibodies is significant,” it sounds. “But not complete.”

evdgSource: Sky News

The research was conducted by Alex Sigal, professor at the Africa Health Research Institute and head of research at the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology in Berlin. In his lab in Durban, South Africa, he investigated the extent to which the new variant could possibly escape the Pfizer/BioNtech vaccine. It found that antibodies from the Pfizer vaccine may be up to 40 times less effective against omikron than against the original Covid strain.

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In addition, the ability to respond to the vaccine was found to be between five and ten times better than the beta variant, which was also first reported in South Africa and previously appeared to have the best ability to evade the shot. “While the ability to escape vaccine antibodies is significant, it is not complete,” Sigal says. “And that’s good news.”

Virologist Sigal believes it is likely that omikron has both an immune system evasion advantage and a transmission advantage over the other variants. In short: that omikron would be more contagious.

ALSO READ. Why positive reports from South Africa about omikron variant do not mean much: “It has a very angry tail, and the question is how big it is” (+)

However, the study needs some nuance. She was, after all, very small. The team examined the blood of 12 people vaccinated with the Pfizer vaccine. The blood of five of the six people who had been vaccinated and had previously been infected did bypass the omikron variant. Which in turn may indicate the usefulness of the booster shot.

The World Health Organization reported in early December that the corona vaccines do seem to protect against the omikron variant, or at least against its serious consequences. Also, WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warned of a general travel ban, as it will not stop the spread of omikron.

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