Scientists across the globe are displaying fear over the covid19 mutation. The fear that the covid19 UK variant is mutating again is on the rise. This new mutation is been said to tend to invade the immune system. There is also the fear that the new vaccines being administered may be less effective against the mutating variants of the CoV-2 virus.
If there is fear that the vaccines being administered will have little or no effect on the new mutating covid19-2 virus, why administer the vaccine?
The UK scientists warned on Tuesday that the highly transmittable and probably deadlier variant of Covid19 that is detected in southern England at the end of last year is beginning to show signs of further mutation.
New feels good, but there is nothing good about the new mutating Covid19-2 variants. The percentage of CoV-2 in a person's body is a crucial component in determining if the person is likely to transmit the virus or not. This conclusion A novel study has shown this after studying almost 300 infected people and their close contacts.
These new, and fast-spreading, variants of the coronavirus, may go-ahead to ameliorate the shielding effects of two dominant vaccines.
The discoveries form part of the yet to be reviewed conclusion of research done at the Cambridge Institute of Therapeutic Immunology and Infectious Disease (CITIID), University of Cambridge. The interpretation is in collaboration with the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) COVID-19 BioResource.
To further, understand why most people, with COVID-19, do not give it to anyone else, while many others become ‘superspreaders’, Michael Marks at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, and his colleagues, monitored 282 people. The 282 monitored cases are deemed ‘index cases’, who had recently developed mild symptoms of COVID-19.
The team also monitored 753 people who lived with, cared for, or otherwise had close contact with the index cases (M. Marks et al. Lancet Infect. Dis. https://doi.org/10.1016/S1473-3099(20)30985-3; 2021).
The new mutating variant was first detected in England. The instant test was conducted on samples of the Kent variant, that showed a mutation called "E484K". Fear grips scientists more as the mutation continues to spread to other nations such as South Africa and Brazil.
According to professor Ravi Gupta, the lead researcher at the CITIID - “The one of particular concern, though, is the emergence of the E484K mutation, which so far has only been seen in a relatively small number of individuals. Our work suggests the vaccine is likely to be less effective when dealing with this (E484K) mutation”.
He further stated that the variant is predicted to continue to amass mutations seen in the other variants, of worry.
In his words, “ We need to plan for the next generation of vaccines to have modifications to account for new variants. We also need to scale up vaccines as fast and as broadly as possible to get transmission down globally”.
Dr. Dami Collier, the main co-investigator on the studies,- stated that the data available suggests that a substantial percentage of people aged over 80 may not have developed protective neutralizing antibodies against infection three weeks after their first dose of the vaccine. But it is comforting to see that after two doses, serum from every individual was able to neutralize the virus.
The scientists are said to have used the blood samples from twenty-six individuals who had collected their first dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine three weeks before to extract serum, which encompasses antibodies raised in counter to the vaccine. The age range of the volunteers is said to have been between 29 to 89 years.
The UK is currently performing door-to-door spurt testing of the new mutating virus in south-east England in other to trace the latest cases of the variant covid19-2. The virus is said to have been detected in two people within the community.
Targeting people who are aren't infected with SARS-CoV-2, is a good move towards curbing the spread, of the mutating disease. It also might help cut death rates in the countries with a high surge of the virus.
To further prevent as many people as possible from getting infected, countries, are advised to make younger age groups and the elderly a priority during vaccination.
Will this help? Time will tell.
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