South African study: Omicron can evade vaccinated with only two Pfizer doses
The Omicron variant of the coronavirus may partially circumvent protection from two doses of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. This was stated by the head of research of a laboratory at the Africa Health Research Institute in South Africa. However, the study showed that blood from people who had received two doses of the vaccine and had a previous infection were mostly able to neutralize the variant, suggesting that booster doses of the vaccine could help fend off infection. .
Alex Sigal, a professor at the Africa Health Research Institute, said in a paper linked from his Twitter account that there has been “a very large decline” in the neutralization of the Omicron variant compared to previous strains of Covid-19.
The lab tested the blood of 12 people who had been vaccinated with two doses of the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine, according to a paper posted on the lab’s website. Preliminary paper data have not yet been peer reviewed.
The blood of five out of six people who had been vaccinated and previously infected with Covis-19 still neutralized the Omicron variant, the paper said. “These results are better than I expected. The more antibodies you have, the better chance you will have of being protected by Omicron, ”said Sigal.
Sigal also added that the lab has not tested the variant in people who have received a third booster dose, because they are not yet available in South Africa.
According to the manuscript, the lab observed a 41-fold drop in neutralizing antibody levels against the Omicron variant. Sigal said the figure is likely to be changed after his lab does more experiments.
China, 74 new cases plus 23 asymptomatic
The People’s Republic of China reported 74 new confirmed coronavirus cases for December 7, down from 94 the day before. Local health authorities announced this. Of the new infections, 44 were transmitted locally, according to a statement by the National Health Commission, up from 60 the day before. The new local cases have been reported by the authorities of Inner Mongolia, Zhejiang, Heilongjiang and Shanghai.
In addition, 23 new asymptomatic cases were reported, which are classified separately from confirmed cases, compared to 14 the day before. There were no new deaths: the death toll therefore stands at 4,636. Since the beginning of the pandemic, 99,371 cases have been confirmed in the Asian country.