Covid - Omicron variant: Pfizer vaccine 70% effective against severe disease, a study found

Published by Laurent P. · Published on 15 December 2021 at 09h47
According toa South-African study carried out by the South African Medical Research Council, the Pfizer vaccine is 70% effective against the Covid Omicron variant, although it is still more resistant, according to a study carried out by the Africa Health Research Institute from Durban. Keep reading to find out more!

The Pfizer vaccine is a vaccine that can protect against the Covid Omicron variant... According to a South-African carried out by the South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC), the vaccine developed by the American laboratory is 70% effective against severe disease. The study relies on the results from 78,000 PCR tests performed between November 15 and December 7. The effectiveness applies to two-dose vaccination: "The double dose of Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine showing 70 percent effectiveness in reducing risk of hospitalisation", said Ryan Noach, the head of South Africa's leading private health insurance company, Discovery.

But, as for contaminations and reinfections, it is a genuine comedown: still according to the study, the vaccine is only 33% effective in cases. Hence the importance of a third dose to boost immunity. But the study is more or less reassuring following the one issued this Tuesday December 7, 2021 in pre-print on MedrXiv by the Africa Health Research Institute from Durban, South Africa, this new strain of the virus is to resist to neutralizing antibodies, and vaccines, and especially Pfizer’s, but not completely. A variant resisting to two doses, but not enough when a third dose is given, the study reads.

This is the very first study to focus on the impact of the Omicron variant on the people and vaccines. Note the study only focuses on neutralizing antibodies, namely a part of the antibodies enabling to fight against the virus and only included 12 patients. It is expected to be carried out to get a better picture of the variant’s action on vaccinees.

As for the study, in six volunteers who have been vaccinated with two doses of Pfizer, a “41-fold decline” in the neutralization was shown in comparison with the standard virus. But, the five other people who have been recently infected with Covid are “showing relatively high neutralization titers with Omicron”, according to the searchers. This is still good news for people given a third dose as it seems it can protect them against severe disease, especially the Omicron variant, with 35-fold neutralizing antibody toll.

A third dose is then likely to put an end to the ambitions of the Omicron strain.

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