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Fauci warns of the need to adapt vaccines to new virus mutations

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Anthony Fauci, the chief epidemiologist of the United States, has warned this Monday that it is likely that vaccines developed against coronavirus are not effective for proximate variants. Although efficiency has been confirmed against South African and UK variants, they may need to be strengthened at some point.

In the virtual meeting of the Davos Forum on the pandemic, he stated: “It is a situation that is evolving and, from now on, we are seeing how to make adapted versions of vaccines to face both mutations ”.

The director of the US National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases has warned of the need to continually renew the study on vaccines and "update the current versions, for a later booster or for a bivalent vaccine, that works against the wild virus and its mutations."

Likewise, the forum discussed the dangerousness of the new strain identified in South Africa, where current vaccines developed by pharmaceutical companies "They totally lose their effectiveness with this mutation", as they are "more problematic when it comes to monoclonal antibody treatments."

In this sense, the epidemiologist advises that the efficacy of the vaccine on this variant could have more risk than the British, although there is still no certainty about it. In fact, the efficacy margin of the vaccines is very high, which guarantees a good performance, even in the face of recent mutations.

The strain found in the UK is more contagious than the original Covid-19, although at the beginning it was stated that it was not more virulent. However, the most recent studies have confirmed the opposite, indicate that it can cause more serious disease and even increase mortality.

On the other hand, the American doctor and expert took a position against delaying the second dose of vaccines while waiting for new supplies. “I understand the reasons why this may be being done, but it is concerning because full efficacy is not achieved until the second dose is received ”, Indian.

Likewise, Fauci stressed that this method can generate a non-optimal efficacy of the vaccine, including, could lead to more mutations of the coronavirus. "It may not be the case, but it is a risk," he said.

The expert has recommended to the health authorities that respect the deadlines between the first and second dose established from clinical trials, which generally they can go from 21 to 28 days depending on the vaccine.

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