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COVID-19 Vaccine Updates
With input from Dr Monica Vasudev
- Coronavirus variant first detected in Brazil, termed P.1, is resistant to three of the four antibody treatments that have emergency use authorization in the United States.
- In experiments, the P.1 variant was exposed to various monoclonal antibodies, including the four that are under use to treat COVID-19 patients in the U.S., including imdevimab and casirivimab from Regneron Pharmaceuticals, and bamlanivimab and etesevimab from Eli Lilly and Co.
- Only imdevimab was found to retain any potency.
- The neutralizing ability of the other three were shown to be considerably or completely abolished in a peer reviewed report available on bioRxiv and provisionally accepted by the journal Cell Host & Microbe.
- P.1 variant was also exposed to plasma from COVID-19 survivors and blood from Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccine recipients. When compared with their effects against the original version of the virus, the plasma and vaccine-induced antibodies appeared to be less effective at neutralizing the variant. In previous studies, they were found to be even less effective against the South Africa variant - B.1.351.
- TheBrazil variant may not pose as big a threat of reinfection or diminished vaccine protection as the South Africa variant. (Reuters)
Dr KK Aggarwal
President CMAAO, HCFI and Past National President IMA