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Should you be concerned about the new COVID-19 version
27 Jan' 21

Should you be concerned about the new COVID-19 version

 

 

Everything you need to know about the new COVID Omicron version: 

New variants and mutations have emerged since the emergence of the novel coronavirus, with the Delta version proving to be the most hazardous of all.

A new COVID variation is known as "Omicron" has now entered the world. The B.1.1.529 variety, which was first discovered in South Africa, is reported to be particularly hazardous. Experts believe that the novel COVID variant has a high transmissibility rate, based on the dramatic increase in COVID patients in South Africa. 

  

Should we be concerned now that the WHO has designated Omicron as a Variant of Concern (VoC)?  

B.1.1.529 has been designated as a variation of concern by the World Health Organization (WHO). Experts regard this rapid transition from "Variant of Interest" (Vol) to "Variant of Concern" (VoC) as a concerning factor, given the vast and significant differences between the two.A variant of concern is linked to "an increase in transmissibility, more severe disease (e.g., increased hospitalizations or deaths), a significant reduction in neutralization by antibodies generated during previous infection or vaccination, reduced effectiveness of treatments or vaccines, or diagnostic detection failures," according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). 

 

Read more More than half of COVID survivors have symptoms up to six months after recovery, according to a new study

What does it signify if the spike protein has numerous mutations?  

The spike protein in the new version Omicron has over 30 changes, which could enable it to create an "immune-escape mechanism.

Spike protein is the component of a virus that allows it to enter the host cell, making it more transmissible and infectious. However, changes in the spike protein make it even more difficult to detect and eradicate  

Because the majority of COVID vaccines are designed to induce antibodies against the spike protein, various mutations in the spike protein only make the vaccines less effective, resulting in lower efficacy. 

  

Is it more easily transmitted?

Although there is no evidence that Omicron is more transmissible, specialists assume that because of the dramatic surge of COVID-19 cases in South Africa, where the novel variant emerged, it may have a higher rate of transmissibility. 

  

What is the difference between it and the Delta variant? Is Omicron the most dangerous of the two?  

The Delta version of the SARs-COV-2 virus remains the most prevalent strain at this time.  

Between the Omicron and Delta strains, there are no notable differences. Fever, sore throat, weariness, headache, and, in severe cases, shortness of breath, chest pain, and other symptoms are thought to be present in both. 

 

Read more Are you considering COVID booster shots? Here's what you need to know.

  

Will the new COVID version reduce the vaccine's efficacy and effectiveness?  

COVID vaccinations serve an essential role in preventing the spread of coronavirus, and the new varieties only complicate their effectiveness.The new COVID variation Omicron has sparked much worry because it is thought to have 30+ mutations in the spike protein, which could make existing COVID vaccinations less effective.Given that vaccinations are designed to detect and destroy the virus's spike proteins, the multiple mutations in spike protein only make it more difficult for vaccines to detect and neutralize new variations, making them less effective. 

  

What is the best course of action for vaccines in the future?  

The SARs-COV-2 virus is no exception, as viruses are prone to mutation. Multiple COVID variations are now circulating in and around the world. Experts believe, however, that COVID vaccines, like influenza vaccines, may need to be updated. Moderna has stated that an Omicron variant vaccination could be available as early as next year. 

 

Read more Is HIPAA prohibiting vaccination questions?

  

The necessity of alertness:  

Aside from vaccinations, health professionals and experts encourage individuals to be cautiousWhile health officials work to extend surveillance, establish several COVID testing centers, and implement COVID-appropriate limitations, the general public can help by wearing a mask, maintaining social distance, and practicing good hand hygiene.Although the new COVID strain has not yet infiltrated India's borders, it is impossible to predict when it will. 

 

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