omicron: To test vaccine efficacy, ICMR isolating Omicron strain | India News – Times of India

Pune: Scientists at the Indian Council of Medical Research-National Institute of Virology (ICMR-NIV) have isolated and increasing the omicron strain of the novel coronavirus from the Dombivali human throat / nose swab sample inside its highly-complete biosecurity laboratory. In Pune.
Scientific practice will answer two critical questions: Can this variant affect the effectiveness of Covishield and Covaxin; And will it fight the antibodies that exist in those who have covid disease from chronic strain?
“ICMR-NIV Dumbivali has received a positive sample of individuals whose genome sequencing confirmed infection from the Omicron strain on Saturday.
“It will take at least a week to separate the entire Omicron strain from the sample. We will then be able to conduct a neutral study to evaluate the efficacy of covacin- and covshield-induced antibodies and natural infection-induced antibodies against lab-grown strains, “said an ICMR official. Ongoing.
“Once we isolate the entire strain and raise enough of it in our lab, scientists will be able to conduct neutralization studies to evaluate the effectiveness of the vaccine,” the official said.
A neutralization study is the best way to evaluate the effectiveness of a vaccine and the likelihood of re-infection. Through this study, scientists will be in a position to compare the ‘level’ of ability to neutralize existing strains and new variants. “And beyond cell-culture testing, the immune potential of vaccine-induced and natural infection-induced antibodies could be studied in animal models against new forms. A positive relationship would increase confidence in the vaccine,” said another virologist.
Infection of any strain of SARS-CoV-2 triggers an immune response against the whole virus, and not just against certain components such as its ‘spikes’. This is why many experts believe that mutations are less likely to affect vaccine-induced protection.
The spike protein of SARS-CoV-2 contains 1,273 amino acids that trigger immunity. The new Omicron variant contains 32 protein amino acid mutations in the S protein. So the idea that vaccines would protect against new strains seems plausible, experts say.

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