- The latest research study by the University of Washington and Humabs Biomed SA showed existing vaccines are not very effective against Omicron.
- The research study analyzed six vaccines.
- The study is not yet peer-reviewed.
The latest research study by the University of Washington and Humabs Biomed SA, a unit of Vir Biotechnology, showed that the COVID-19 vaccines made by China’s Sinopharm, Johnson and Johnson of the US, and Sputnik developed by Russia are not considerably effective against the Omicron variant of coronavirus. It was found that these vaccines generate very little or no antibodies against the variant.
The research study analyzed six vaccines’ efficacy against the highly infectious virus mutant, Omicron. The study showed that with the Sinopharm vaccine, only three out of 13 people generated antibodies against the virus. At the same time, it was only one out of 12 samples with the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, and no one generated any antibodies out of 11 people fully vaccinated with Sputnik.
The other three vaccines studied were Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, and vector vaccine developed by the University of Oxford and AstraZeneca Plc. Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines were found to have generated fewer antibodies in people who have taken two doses. At the same time, the AstraZeneca vaccine was also found to have less protection against the virus.
The research studies earlier also showed that the Sinovac Biotech Ltd’s vaccine with two doses is not as sufficient against Omicron. So, there may be a need for a booster dose to protect against it.
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Though the study is not yet peer-reviewed, its revelations today has created jitters among investors amid prospective uncertainties in the economies globally.
Omicron is the most easily infectious variant of the coronavirus and has spread in over 77 countries almost within a month from when the first case was reported in South Africa. Governments are still not sure about how deadly it is.
On the one hand, researchers are working and finding the efficacy of vaccines through studying the immune responses of people after undertaking the vaccine. On the other, research is still ongoing for studying cell-mediated immunity, better known as T-cells response against Omicron.
Scientists and people in the healthcare industry are striving to find a solution to the health crisis. Ideas of developing a third dose or using a combination of different existing vaccines are being considered to achieve sure shot protection against Omicron.
J&J, Sputnik & Sinopharm vaccines ineffective against Omicron: Study
After the study was published today, stocks of vaccine makers fell. Pfizer, Inc. (PFE) was down around 2%, Moderna, Inc. (MRNA) stock decreased 2.27%, AstraZeneca (AZN) declined 0.7%, and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) plunged more than 2%, intraday.