The newly emerged (B.1.1.529) Omicron variant is a new threat for the world today. This new variant is 6 times more transmissible than Delta Variant.
Preliminary analysis suggests that Omicron infections are more in South Africa. Researchers suggest that this new variant has ‘R Value’ that the previous Delta Variant that triggered the 2nd wave in India.
Delta Variant which is known for heavy infections and mortality has a solution as it responds to the monoclonal antibody therapy. But unfortunately, Delta Plus which is considered Delts’s offspring does not respond to the same treatment.
As per reports, the B.1.1.529 variant is becoming dominant in almost 0 to 75% in just 2 weeks of time in South Africa. 3 mutations in the S1/S2 furin cleavage suggests better cell entry which is helping transmissibility. However, the properties of single mutations don’t always add up. But when they occur in combination it becomes more dangerous.
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Many experts still feel that the severity is yet to be known. The results so far suggest that in some countries like Israel and South Africa, even the COVID-19 vaccine booster dose has failed to constrain the Omicron variant spread.
It is to be noted that some of the clinical outcomes have proved that even the Delta variant also caused a COVID-19 vaccine breakthrough infections along with transmissibility.
Omicron is the 2nd variant of concern that may not respond to monoclonal antibody treatment as it carries 53 variants precisely.
Out of 53 variants, 32 spike protein variants. Most of these variants possess resistance against immunity and other functional implications. 6 Variants spike receptor-binding domain on G339D, S373P, G496S, Q498R and Y505H. These are found resistant to monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) including etesevimab, bamlanivimab, casirivimab, imdevimab and their cocktails.
All these factors have caused worries about the spread and transmission of the variant even to the vaccinated.