Pfizer-teenliggaampies 'kan tot 40 keer minder effektief teen omicron – nuutste

Pfizer-teenliggaampies 'kan tot 40 keer minder effektief teen omicron – nuutste
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Omicron more transmissible but milder than delta variant, initial research suggests

Pfizer’s vaccine provides some protection from the new omikron variant but it has managed to escape it partially, according to an early study conducted in Suid-Afrika.

Researchers at the Africa Health Research Institute in Durban conducted the first experiment gauging the efficacy of the Pfizer vaccine on omicron and found that it resulted in about a 40-fold reduction in levels of neutralising antibodies produced by people who had received two doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech SE shot, compared with the variant detected in China almost two years ago.

The research also found that a third dose may add to the protection of the vaccine against the highly mutated variant.

Intussen, the United States’ top infectious disease expert Dr Anthony Fauci has said that the omicron variant is “clearly highly transmissible”, but is “almost certainly” not more severe than delta.

Earlier onIn Tuesday, new leaked footage appears to show Downing Street staff joking last Christmas while preparing a suitable response to potential questions over whether a party in No 10 broke Boris Johnson’s own coronavirus rules.

In a recording obtained by ITV Nuus, reportedly made on 22 Desember, former Downing Street press secretary Allegra Stratton can be seen laughing and saying, “this fictional party was a business meeting and it was not socially distanced”, while reminding colleagues: “This is recorded.”

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ICYMI: Downing Street staff filmed laughing about Christmas party in leaked footage

A leaked footage appears to show Downing Street’s former press secretary Allegra Stratton laughing last year as No 10 staff appeared to attempt to prepare her for the possibility of journalists’ questions over a party in the building.

A recording obtained by ITV Nuus purports to show Ms Stratton in Downing Street’s newly built £2.6m press briefing room, answering questions from one of Boris Johnson’s advisers about whether she “recognises” reports of a party in No 10.

“I went home,”Ms Stratton can be heard replying, before starting to laugh and adding, “hold on”, while appearing to think of an appropriate response.

After a significant pause, she is asked whether the prime minister would condone having a Christmas party, to which she laughs and responds: “What’s the answer?”

Others in the room can be heard saying: “It wasn’t a party, it was cheese and wine.”

“Is cheese and wine alright?” Ms Stratton can be heard asking, before adding with a laugh: “This is recorded. This fictional party was a business meeting and it was not socially distanced.”

Die Onafhanklike has approached Ms Stratton for comment over the footage obtained by ITV Nuus.

Our policy correspondent Jon Stone has this report:

Uitgelekte opname wys dat personeel in Downingstraat grappe maak oor Kerspartytjie in nr 10

Spokesperson joked that party could be passed off as ‘business meeting’

Stuti Mishra8 Desember 2021 07:00
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World’s largest vaccine manufacturer to halve its output

Serum Institute of India (SII), the world’s biggest vaccine maker, has said it is going to halve its production of Covishield, a version of AstraZeneca’s Covid vaccine, from next week due to an absence of orders.

I am going to be reducing production by at least 50 per cent to begin with, going forward on a monthly basis, until orders again pick up either in India or the world,” Adar Poonawalla, CEO of SII told India’s CNBC TV18.

SII’s Covishield has been the most administered vaccine in India and it is also being exported to developing and under-developed nations under the international vaccine sharing programme Covax.

The company began its exports once again in November after a long halt, after it said it reached its original target of producing one billion doses of Covishield by the end of the year.

“SII has reached this milestone ahead of time via rapid expansion of production capacity at its site in Pune,” the company said in a release in November.

Apart from Covishield, SII is also producing another Covid vaccine, Covovax, from US-based company Novavax, which received emergency use authorisation from regulators in Indonesia and the Philippines recently.

While SII has decided to reduce production, India is yet to take a call on providing booster jabs to its population despite fears of the omicron variant.

Indië, which has so far managed to fully vaccinate only 35 persent van die bevolking, has reported 23 cases of the new variant.

Stuti Mishra8 Desember 2021 06:44
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South Korea to consider expanding at-home Covid treatment as cases rise to 7,000

South Korea is considering expanding home treatment of Covid-19 patients, a health official said on Wednesday, amid fears of rising pressure on hospitals as cases spike once again in the country to record numbers.

The country reported 7,175 new coronavirus cases and 63 deaths on Tuesday, the first time daily infections were over 7,000, while hospitals treated a record 840 critical and serious cases.

It is important to retain or reduce the trend of the current scale of the severely-ill patients within a week or two,” Son Young-rae, a senior health ministry official, told a news conference.

He also said the government may need to make some adjustments to the way the healthcare system in the country works if cases continue to rise, including expanding the limit of Covid patients who can receive at-home treatment.

Reeds, asymptomatic patients and those with mild symptoms and below the age of 70 can treat themselves at home in the country.

The government will mobilise additional personnel to oversee coronavirus patients treating themselves at home and improve the emergency transfer system to hospitals for those who develop severe symptoms.

Stuti Mishra8 Desember 2021 06:12
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Australia finds new ‘omicron-likesub-lineage

Australia’s Queensland has detected two new cases of omicron, including one with a different lineage of the new variant.

While Australia already has confirmed instances of community transmission of omicron, the two cases are the first for Queensland.

Two men, who travelled from Nigeria and South Africa, were found infected with the omicron variant and both have been isolated while their contacts are being tested, officials confirmed on Wednesday.

But samples of one of the people tested, who travelled from South Africa to Brisbane on Saturday, was found to have a slightly different lineage of omicron genetically.

The scientific team that spotted the difference has passed it on to the international committee, resulting in reclassification of the variant into two lineages.

The important part is those two sub-lineages, one has the S gene dropout and is the normal means of screening for omicron … but then this other gene then doesn’t have this S gene dropout,” Queensland’s chief health officer Peter Aitken was quoted as saying by ABC Australia.

He added that new classification would make it easier for people to recognise the potential spread of omicron in all communities.

Stuti Mishra8 Desember 2021 05:42
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Fauci says omicron Covid variant ‘almost certainly’ not more severe than delta

The United States’ top infectious disease official has said that the omicron coronavirus variant is “clearly highly transmissible”, but is “almost certainly” not more severe than delta.

Speaking to Agence France-Presse, Dr Anthony Fauci said that experiments testing the potency of antibodies from the various vaccines against the omicron variant should be available in the “next few days to a week”.

Fauci says omicron Covid variant ‘almost certainly’ not more severe than delta

The doctor said that while less severe, the omicron variant is still highly transmissible

Stuti Mishra8 Desember 2021 05:10
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Existing vaccines should be able to protect against omicron, says WHO official

Reacting to the early lab tests in South Africa showing Pfizer’s reduced efficacy in protecting against the omicron variant, a World Health Organisation (WIE) official said existing vaccines should be able to provide adequate protection against severe cases even with the new variant.

According to the WHO’s Dr Mike Ryan, there was no sign yet that omicron would be better at evading vaccines than other variants.

We have highly effective vaccines that have proved effective against all the variants so far, in terms of severe disease and hospitalisation, and there’s no reason to expect that it wouldn’t be sofor omicron, Dr Ryan, the WHO’s emergencies director, told AFP news agency.

He added that initial data suggested omicron did not cause more severe illness but became milder.

“Indien enigiets, the direction is towards less severity,” hy het gesê.

Stuti Mishra8 Desember 2021 04:53
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Pfizer provides less protection against omicron than other variants

Researchers in South Africa have found in an early study that Pfizer’s vaccine provides some protection against the new omicron variant, but less than it provided with other variants.

Researchers at the Africa Health Research Institute in Durban conducted the first experiment gauging the efficacy of the Pfizer vaccine on omicron and found that it resulted in about a 40-fold reduction in levels of neutralising antibodies produced by people who had received two doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech SE shot, compared with the variant detected in China almost two years ago.

Alex Sigal, the head of research at the laboratory, said that the loss of immune protection is “robust, but not complete” and that further efficacy studies are needed to ascertain the extent of protection Pfizer can provide, adding that a booster dose can increase the protection.

“A good booster probably would decrease your chance of infection, especially severe infection leading to more severe disease,” the Bloomberg news agency quoted the researcher as saying. “People who haven’t had a booster should get one, and people who have been previously infected should be vaccinated.

Stuti Mishra8 Desember 2021 04:30
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Good Morning!

Welkom by Die Onafhanklike s'n live blog covering the Covid-19 pandemic for Wednesday 8 Desember.

Stuti Mishra8 Desember 2021 03:59

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