Monday, October 3, 2022
Home Covid-19 Omicron variant: AstraZeneca exploring impact on vaccine, antibody cocktail

Omicron variant: AstraZeneca exploring impact on vaccine, antibody cocktail

AstraZeneca said on Friday it was examining the impact of a new coronavirus variant that is spreading rapidly in South Africa on its vaccine and its antibody cocktail, adding it was hopeful its combination drug would retain efficacy.

The World Health Organization (WHO) on Friday designated a new COVID-19 variant B.1.1.529, detected in South Africa with a large number of mutations, as being “of concern.”

AstraZeneca has distributed 2 billion doses of its vaccine worldwide, although rollout of the shot was paused in South Africa in February after it was shown to offer minimal protection against mild to moderate illness caused by the Beta variant, which was dominant in the country at the time.

Read more:
Canada clamps down on Omicron COVID-19 variant. Experts say it’s likely ‘already here’

“As with any new emerging variants, we are looking into B.1.1.529 to understand more about it and the impact on the vaccine,” AstraZeneca said in a statement, adding it was conducting research in Botswana and Eswatini to collect data.

Story continues below advertisement

“That will enable us to collect real world data of Vaxzevria against this new virus variant.”

The Anglo-Swedish pharmaceutical firm emphasized that the vaccine has been shown to be effective against all SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern.

AstraZeneca said that it had developed a vaccine platform to respond quickly to new variants with Oxford University, where the vaccine was created. It has previously said it is working on a variant vaccine to better target the Beta variant.

The company has also developed an antibody cocktail that can be used both to prevent and to treat COVID-19.


Click to play video: '‘Omicron’ COVID-19 variant triggers new travel ban'







‘Omicron’ COVID-19 variant triggers new travel ban


‘Omicron’ COVID-19 variant triggers new travel ban

Although some scientists have expressed concern that the spike protein mutations might hinder the effectiveness of monoclonal antibody drugs, the combination drug made by AstraZeneca might retain its efficacy, the company said.

Story continues below advertisement

“We are also testing our long-acting antibody combination AZD7442 against this new variant and are hopeful AZD7442 will retain efficacy since it comprises two potent antibodies with different and complementary activities against the virus,” it said.

© 2021 Reuters

Most Popular

Ian strengthens into major Category 3 hurricane as storm makes landfall in Cuba

Hurricane Ian strengthened into a major Category 3 storm early Tuesday morning as it made landfall in western Cuba, U.S. officials said.Landfall was just...

Hunting For An Exciting Back Yard Family Game, This Dad Invented His Own. Now It’s Taking Off.

Joe Bingham, a structural engineer from Ogden, Utah, was looking for a backyard game he could play with his seven kids, instead of driving...

Is the Market Overreacting with Shopify Stock?

Shares may have been overly punished by the markets Shopify continues to grow, but at a slower pace Shopify says 2022 is the ‘transition back to...

Comment on Following the Rules: Training Small Business Owners Better by Charles Iarocci

Your Business Professor was teaching our 5-year-old boy some basketball moves in our backyard court …Grab a jersey here. Push there. Lean. Scream.Charmaine looked out the...