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South African variant of covid-19 could affect vaccine efficacy


(CNN) — A variant of the new coronavirus found in #South #Africa is spreading rapidly and researchers don’t know if it poses a challenge to the vaccine, according to the scientist who discovered the variation.

“#At the moment, we assume that the vaccine will be effective,” said #Tulio de #Oliveira, a professor at the #University of #KwaZulu-Natal in #Durban, #South #Africa. “#It could potentially affect the efficacy of the vaccine, but it needs to be properly tested.”

#On #Thursday, #Dr. #Anthony #Fauci, director of the #National #Institute of #Allergy and #Infectious #Diseases, told NBC’s #Today #Show that a different variant of the virus, first identified in the UK, “does not appear to evade the protection they provide. the vaccines that are currently in use.

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MIRA: #New variant of covid-19 could already be in #Mexico, says López #Gatell

#De #Oliveira said the #South #African variant does not appear to cause a more serious illness, but is spreading rapidly.

“The more we study this variant, the more we worry,” said de #Oliveira, a virologist and affiliate professor of global health at the #University of #Washington. “#Our main concern is just the transmission speed and how this variant has mastered so quickly.”

#He said that of the samples taken from about 400 people with COVID-19 who were treated at more than 100 different clinics in #South #Africa since mid-November, 350 had this new variant. #That’s 90% of the samples.

#What we know about the #South #African variant

The #South #African variant has been found in seven other countries: #United #Kingdom, #Switzerland, #Finland, #Japan, #Australia, #Zambia, and #France.

The variant has 22 significant changes from previous strains of the coronavirus, an unusually high number of mutations. The UK strain only has 17 mutations. #Several of the mutations are related to the spike proteins found on top of the virus, which are the target of antibodies generated by vaccines.

“#What worries us most is that three of these mutations are in the receptor-binding domain, and that is the most important region of the virus and a primary target of antibodies generated by the immune system and vaccines,” #Oliveira said. .

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[ source link ]
https://cnnespanol.cnn.com/2020/12/31/la-variante-de-sudafrica-del-coronavirus-podria-afectar-potencialmente-la-eficacia-de-la-vacuna-dice-el-virologo-que-descubrio-la-variacion/

##South ##African #variant #covid19 #affect #vaccine #efficacy

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