The boss of the World Health Organization (WHO) stressed on Wednesday that the Omicron variant of the coronavirus responsible for COVID-19 appears to have a higher rate of reinfection, but cause less severe symptoms than the Delta variant.
Preliminary data from South Africa suggests a higher risk of re-infection with Omicron, but more data is needed to draw firmer conclusions. There is also some evidence that Omicron causes less severe symptoms than Delta, but again it is too early to be certain., said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus during a WHO press briefing in Geneva.
To get a more accurate picture of the characteristics of the variant more quickly, he asked all countries to contribute to his assessment by submitting their data to the organization. To better combat it, he also called on all countries to continue their efforts in terms of vaccination and barrier gestures.
The scientific chief of the WHO, the doctor Soumya Swaminathan also returned on preliminary studies published in recent days which seem to show that the variant makes the vaccine of Pfizer and BioNTech less effective and she called for the greatest caution in interpreting them. .
4 to 5times less than 40times less in these different studies “,” text “:” There is a wide variation in the reduction in the effectiveness of antibodies which goes from 4 to 5 times less to 40 times less in these different studies “}}”>There is a wide variation in the reduction in antibody efficacy ranging from 4 to 5 times less to 40 times less in these different studies., which are limited to studying the effect on the only antibodies
when we know that the immune system is much more complex, she said.
It is premature to conclude that the reduction in antibody neutralization activity should result in a significant decrease in vaccine efficacy., she added.