Scientists worried about the “obsolescence” of vaccines against coronavirus
Vaccination in Brazil
Scientists are concerned about the emergence of new strains of the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, which can reduce the effectiveness of existing vaccines. Bloomberg reports.
“The problem with these strains and a cause for concern for many of us is not that vaccines will suddenly stop working, but that they will gradually become obsolete,” explains Michael Kinch, a microbiologist and immunologist at the University of Washington in St. Louis.
In his opinion, vaccines that lead to the production of antibodies that recognize several different elements of the coronavirus will be more durable. Antibodies produced after vaccination with Sputnik V, AstraZeneca and many other vaccines developed in 2020 recognize only the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein.
Experts from Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson are already creating boost vaccines that increase protection against British, South African and other emerging strains of coronavirus. They are expected to be ready by fall 2021. According to Andrew Pollard of the University of Oxford, creating a single vaccine against many strains is difficult because it is not yet clear which strains will spread in a few months.
In early February, WHO announced that a coronavirus strain detected in the UK had been identified in 86 countries. In addition, the geography of the distribution of strains identified in South Africa, Brazil and Japan has expanded. The South African type of COVID-19 as of February 8 was found in 44 states, over the past week there were three more. The Japanese strain spread over seven days in five new states, and now there are 15 of them.