Home LATEST NEWS Molecular Analysis of Omicron Variant Reveals First Images | Coronavirus

Molecular Analysis of Omicron Variant Reveals First Images | Coronavirus

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Molecular analysis of the Omicron variant and its image make it possible to count 37 mutations in the spike protein (spike protein, in English) of SARS-CoV-2.

The Omicron variant, compared to the Alpha variant, has a stronger binding, but appears to be equivalent to the Delta variant, summarizes Dr. Benoit Barbeau, expert in virology and professor in the department of biological sciences at the University of Quebec in Montreal (University of Quebec in Montreal), specializing in virology.

Unlike the other variants, the study confirms that SARS-COV-2 […] is able to change the composition of the spike protein without losing its infection efficiency.

A quote from Dr Benoit Barbeau, expert in virology, University of Quebec in Montreal

Antibodies less effective against Omicron

A gloved hand holds a tube with the Omicron variant indication.

The antibodies would be less effective against the Omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2, according to the study.

Photo: getty images / istockphoto / DMEPhotography

According to Dr Sriram Subramaniam, the Omicron variant is much more effective than other variants in combating monoclonal antibodies that are commonly used as treatments, as well as in evading immunity produced by vaccines and natural defenses.

The Omicron variant, thanks [aux mutations de] its spike protein, is less easily neutralized by antibodies compared to other variants , bids Dr. Benoit Barbeau.

However, according to him, the observed decrease is not as significant as those of other studies released previously.

Antibodies do not completely lose their effectiveness […] so if you are able to produce a high enough amount of antibodies you should be able to protect yourself better against infection, explains the professor at the department of biological sciences of theUniversity of Quebec in Montreal

Towards the creation of new vaccines and treatments

AbCellera researcher Caitlin Pritchard in her lab.

The UBC study would pave the way for the creation of new and more effective treatments and vaccines against the Omicron variant (archived).

Photo: CBC / Ben Nelms

Since the antibodies are less effective against the Omicron variant, it is necessary to have it in large quantities to ensure normal protection against infection with COVID-19, according to Dr. Benoit Barbeau.

The reason for this third dose is all the more important, he argues. For him, other studies show that the standard two- and three-dose vaccination protocol reduces the likelihood of developing severe symptoms of the disease.

In addition, the study conducted by the team of researchers fromUniversity of British Columbia paves the way for the creation of new treatments adapted to fight against COVID-19 triggered by SARS-COV-2 variants, including the Omicron variant, according to Dr Sriram Subramaniam.

Understanding how the virus attaches and infects human cells allows the development of treatments that disrupt this process and neutralize the virus.

A quote from Dr Sriram Subramaniam, Professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Faculty of Medicine,University of British Columbia

For Dr. Benoit Barbeau, the study may also lead to the development of new vaccines against COVID-19 better able to combat the Omicron variant.

This solution was not adopted to fight against the previous variants of the virus, because the effectiveness of the vaccines was stronger there, according to him.

: at what point you have to put a lot of effort on this variant when there are going to be others? “,” text “:” The question is: at which point you must put a lot of effort on this variant? variant when there are going to be others? “}}”>The question is: how much effort do you have to put into this variant when there are going to be others? He adds that the higher level of infection of the Omicron variant would make the development of new vaccines possible.

Pharmaceutical companies Pfizer and Moderna are already working on it, he says.

Lastly, Dr. Benoit Barbeau specifies that the study is still subject to peer validation before its official publication. All the same, these are the first images of the Omicron variant following its molecular analysis.

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