Home Health News The South African coronavirus mutation can infect multiple times, could hamper vaccine – Salon

The South African coronavirus mutation can infect multiple times, could hamper vaccine – Salon

6 min read
15
1

A mutant strain of the novel coronavirus discovered in South Africa appears to be able to ward off antibodies from individuals who had previously recovered from COVID-19 — meaning if the new strain becomes widespread, we may see more people getting infected multiple times. 

A group of South African scientists made this discovery in a paper published earlier this week by South Africa’s National Institute for Communicable Diseases. In it, researchers describe how they studied blood samples from a small group of people who had developed COVID-19 but ultimately recovered. When the human body recovers from a disease, it produces a protein known as an antibody to identify and ultimately protect itself in the future from the bacteria or virus which caused it to become ill. (These illness-causing microorganisms are known as pathogens.) This means that people who were sick with COVID-19 should in theory have antibodies that recognize the pathogen which causes it and neutralize it in the event that they are reinfected.

Advertisement:

Instead, according to the authors of the paper, half of the blood samples of the patients they tested did not have the antibodies necessary to protect them from the 501Y.V2 strain of the novel coronavirus, which was identified in South Africa last month. While it was a small study and more research will need to be done, the initial results are not auspicious.

Not only could this interfere with the human population’s ability to develop natural immunity, it could also hamper the efficacy of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. Both companies are distributing mRNA vaccines, which are different from traditional vaccines that train the immune system to develop antibodies against pathogens by injecting weakened or dead versions of the disease-causing agents into the body. mRNA vaccines, by contrast, inject a synthetic single-stranded molecule of RNA that infects our own cells and makes them produce the protein that grows on the “spike” on the exterior of the coronavirus. The presence of this protein in the body is then recognized as an intruder, and the immune system learns to identify the coronavirus as an enemy and protect against it.

In the case of the COVID-19 vaccines, both of them train the body to recognize a protein on the SARS-CoV-2 virus known as Spike. Spike is the protein that helps the virus enter human cells and resembles little pins that stick out from the sphere of the virus itself, like the spines that poke out all around a sea urchin. Unfortunately, the South African mutation alters that very protein, meaning that it could affect the vaccine’s efficacy.

Advertisement:

The South African strain is not the only one raising concern. There is a new strain in Brazil that the scientists argue “also has changes at key positions” in ways that could impair antibodies’ effectiveness against the disease. Then there is a strain in the United Kingdom known as B117 that, though not deadlier than previous strains, is more transmissible.

“I think transmissible is definitely the word to go with because that highlights what we do know and what we don’t know,” Dr. Dylan Morris, a postdoctoral research scholar at UCLA, told Salon earlier this month about the British strain. “Even if the disease severity isn’t increased or even if it decreases by a small amount, ‘more transmissible’ is still a very scary thing at this point in the pandemic, because that could result in faster spread and faster exponential growth.”

Let’s block ads! (Why?)


Source link

15 Comments

  1. cheap flights

    January 31, 2021 at 8:56 am

    If you are going for finest contents like me, simply visit this web page all the time
    as it provides feature contents, thanks

    Reply

  2. cheap flights

    January 31, 2021 at 9:37 pm

    You need to take part in a contest for one of the best sites on the
    web. I am going to highly recommend this web site!

    Reply

  3. cheap flights

    February 1, 2021 at 7:05 pm

    I’m curious to find out what blog system you have been working
    with? I’m experiencing some small security issues with my latest website and I would like to find something more safe.
    Do you have any recommendations?

    Reply

  4. cheap flights

    February 2, 2021 at 7:44 pm

    I do not even know how I ended up here, but I thought this post was great.
    I do not know who you are but definitely you’re going to a famous blogger if you aren’t already 😉 Cheers!

    Reply

  5. http://tinyurl.com

    February 3, 2021 at 10:44 am

    Hello! I’ve been following your site for some time now and finally
    got the bravery to go ahead and give you a shout out from New Caney Texas!

    Just wanted to say keep up the great job!

    Reply

  6. http://tinyurl.com/y3qybhzo

    February 12, 2021 at 2:02 am

    Oh my goodness! Amazing article dude! Many thanks,
    However I am encountering difficulties with your RSS.
    I don’t know why I am unable to join it. Is there anybody else having identical RSS problems?
    Anybody who knows the solution can you kindly respond?
    Thanks!!

    Reply

  7. tinyurl.com

    March 10, 2021 at 5:35 am

    I know this if off topic but I’m looking
    into starting my own weblog and was curious what all is
    needed to get setup? I’m assuming having a blog like
    yours would cost a pretty penny? I’m not very internet savvy
    so I’m not 100% certain. Any suggestions or advice would be greatly
    appreciated. Cheers

    Reply

  8. j.mp

    March 15, 2021 at 7:33 am

    Wow, superb blog layout! How long have you been blogging for?

    you made blogging look easy. The overall look of your web site is magnificent, as well
    as the content! games ps4 allenferguson games ps4

    Reply

  9. coconut oil

    March 15, 2021 at 10:53 pm

    After I originally left a comment I appear to have clicked on the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now every time a comment is added I receive four emails with the same comment.
    There has to be an easy method you are able to remove me from that service?

    Thanks a lot! games ps4 185413490784 games ps4

    Reply

  10. ps4 games

    March 18, 2021 at 4:27 pm

    Greate article. Keep posting such kind of information on your blog.
    Im really impressed by your site.
    Hello there, You have performed an incredible job. I
    will definitely digg it and individually recommend to
    my friends. I am confident they will be benefited from this site.

    Reply

  11. http://tinyurl.com/ydqndcvu

    March 19, 2021 at 2:37 am

    Hello! This is kind of off topic but I need some help from an established blog.

    Is it hard to set up your own blog? I’m not very techincal but I can figure things out pretty quick.
    I’m thinking about making my own but I’m not sure where to begin. Do you have any ideas or suggestions?
    Thanks

    Reply

  12. http://tinyurl.com/

    March 19, 2021 at 10:23 am

    Hello, i read your blog occasionally and i own a similar one and i was just curious
    if you get a lot of spam responses? If so how do you protect against it, any plugin or anything
    you can advise? I get so much lately it’s driving me insane so any
    help is very much appreciated.

    Reply

  13. tinyurl.com

    March 22, 2021 at 12:30 am

    I used to be recommended this website through my cousin. I am no longer certain whether
    this publish is written by way of him as no one else know such
    designated about my problem. You’re amazing! Thank you!

    Reply

  14. minecraft games

    March 23, 2021 at 12:34 am

    Hey! This is kind of off topic but I need some help from an established blog.

    Is it very hard to set up your own blog? I’m not very techincal but I can figure things out pretty fast.
    I’m thinking about making my own but I’m not sure where to begin.
    Do you have any points or suggestions? Many thanks

    Reply

  15. 0mniartist

    April 12, 2021 at 1:07 am

    It’s awesome in support of me to have a site,
    which is good designed for my experience. thanks admin asmr 0mniartist

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Check Also

With obesity on the rise, the best diet may be tailored to our genes, experts say – ABC News

With the COVID-19 pandemic drawing more attention to America’s obesity problem, a gr…