India provides medical supplies to African countries to fight Omicron variant | Latest News Headlines

India provides medical supplies to African countries to fight Omicron variant

| Local News | Local News

The first sample from the Omicron line or B.1.1.529 was taken on November 9, according to the WHO. This has come to the fore due to an increase in cases in South Africa.

“This new variant, B.1.1.529 seems to be spreading very quickly! Tulio de Oliveira, Director of the South African Center for Epidemic Response and Innovation, and a genetic researcher at the University of Stellenbosch, said on Twitter.

In addition, genetic sequencing has shown that it carries a large number of disturbing mutations in the spike protein – the button-like structure on the surface of the virus that it uses to attack the cells it infects.

Some of these mutations were already recognized from other variants and were known to make them more dangerous, including one called E484A – a slightly altered version of a mutation called E484K which can make the virus less recognizable to certain antibodies – immune system proteins that are the first line of defense against infection and form the basis of monoclonal antibody therapy.

It also carries a mutation called N501Y, which has given both Alpha and Gamma their increased transmissibility. As recently as last week, Scott Weaver of the University of Texas Medical Branch and colleagues reported in the journal Nature that this particular mutation made the virus more apt to replicate in the upper respiratory tract – think of the nose. and throat – and probably makes it more likely to spread. when people breathe, sneeze and cough.

Like Delta, Omicron also carries a mutation called D614G, which appears to help the virus attach better to the cells it infects.

“The number of mutations per se does not mean that the new variant will cause problems, although it may make it more likely to have a different appearance than the immune system,” Dr Peter English, former chairman of the British Medical Association’s Public Health Medicine. Committee, said in a statement.

What worries scientists is the number of mutations affecting the spike protein. This is because most of the major vaccines target the spike protein. Vaccines made by Pfizer / BioNTech, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson, AstraZeneca and other companies use only small pieces or genetic sequences of the virus and not the whole virus, and all use pieces of the spike protein to arouse immunity. So a change in the spike protein that would make it less recognizable to immune system proteins and vaccine-stimulated cells would be a problem.

So far, there is no evidence that this has happened, but there is no way to know it by looking only at the mutations. Researchers will have to wait and see if more breakthrough infections are caused by Omicron than by other variants.

The other fear is that the mutations may help make the virus less susceptible to monoclonal antibody treatments. However, the WHO says these mutations are unlikely to affect other Covid-19 treatments, including antiviral drugs in development and the steroid dexamethasone.

Learn more about the variants of the coronavirus:

News Today Local news India provides medical supplies to African countries to fight Omicron variant

Not all news on the site expresses the point of view of the site, but we transmit this news automatically and translate it through programmatic technology on the site and not from a human editor.
Back to top button