Covid-19 new variant known as omicron has popped up and has become a matter of concern for the world
- the specific mutations on the spike protein.
- mutations in the spike protein
- the fastest spreading covid variants
The omicron variant emerged in South Africa. It was first discovered by scientists a few days ago. It has over 30 mutations in the spike protein and that’s raising concerns that it might be more contagious, possibly cause more severe infection and might be able to evade our vaccines.
This is not known for sure but there’s a high level of concern there, especially because of how fast this virus is spreading there.
will our vaccines still be effective against the omicron variant?
That was the concern when delta came out and thankfully our vaccines remain effective against Delta but Delta doesn’t have the same number of mutations as a micron. And the big fear that the virus is evading our immune system might come true. I mean we’ve had new variants emerge right. We’ve seen a lot of variants pop up over the last eight months or so and most of them, for example, lambda have not amounted to much.
I mean you hear about all these new variants emerging all the time that’s expected and they’re detected because scientists are constantly running surveillance on covid. But here we are with the new one um Akron and it has a special level of concern. Not just because it has more mutations in the spike protein over 30 mutations but also because some of those mutations are the same mutations as the other four variants of concern. But we really won’t know if this variant will escape our vaccines until probably a few weeks from now. Because it takes time to do those studies. Keep in mind that whenever there’s a new virus just like in Wuhan, by the time you actually identify it, you’re already a few weeks behind it, which means it’s already spread most likely throughout the world. When you look at one of these mutations on the spike protein, any given mutation can clue you in as to its ability to potentially evade the immune system and the immune system’s antibodies.
Is it possible that the new variant is in the U. S. As of right now?
There are no confirmed cases here. But it’s only a matter of time we know that it went to Botswana and made its way to Hong kong and then Belgium. So it’s possible that it’s in the United States but as of the making of this video there are no confirmed cases Which speaks to just how fresh this new variant is a specimen from the first known case in South Africa was collected November nine and it’s been spreading quickly there in order to test for it. You have to first get the exact molecular blueprints of that new strain.
So United States scientists are collaborating with South African scientists in order to make that happen. Which my guess that’s going to take a few days. So scientists will have some preliminary data in the next few days to get an idea if this is gonna be escaping our vaccines. But I have to say I don’t have a good feeling about this new variant. The specific mutations, the number of mutations and how quickly became dominant in South Africa meaning how fast a specific strain spreads in a certain area.
We’re talking days to weeks as opposed to Delta which took months. W. H. O. Officials also said in their statement that preliminary evidence does suggest that a micron also poses a higher risk of reinfection compared to other variants of concern. And when scientists see this, it’s no wonder why world leaders are reacting quickly. They’re announcing new travel restrictions but how effective those travel restrictions are.
That’s a whole other conversation. Regardless, President bidden did say that he’s going to restrict travel from South Africa and seven other nations starting Monday. Also you already have vaccine makers getting ready even testing a micron specific boosters. Modern, they’re running tests, they came out and said that the strain includes mutations seen in the delta variant that are believed to increase transmissibility and mutations seen in the beta and delta variants that are believed to promote immune escape.
The combination of mutations represents a significant potential risk to accelerate the waning of natural and vaccine induced immunity. Pfizer, Johnson and Johnson same deal. The thing of it is right now is that delta is still overwhelming. It’s still crowding. I see us just about all of those patients I see on a daily basis unvaccinated. But what if a micron does render our vaccines useless? That would basically mean we’d be experiencing a whole new pandemic again, a whole another 2020 unless these vaccines are quickly tweaked to account for the new variant. That’s why you have this vaccine makers jumping on this right now.