Which vaccination shows real effect against Omikron - an inactivated vaccine does not pass the test
Created: 01/14/2022 05:12
By: Juliane Gutmann
The corona vaccination protects against severe Covid courses - but not every vaccine protects equally against all virus variants, as a new study shows.
© Matias Basualdo/Imago
The virus mutant Omicron is currently spreading worldwide.
A virus expert explains which vaccination offers the best protection and why the booster is so important.
According to a blog entry by the TU Bergakademie Freiberg, the booster dose* only provides effective protection against an omicron infection for a few months. In general, the omicron virus variant is more successful than all other corona variants before it because no mutant can spread as quickly as before.
However, according to the current state of knowledge, the highly contagious version of the coronavirus does not lead to more severe illnesses
: "The risk of being admitted to the emergency department with Omicron was only about a third that of Delta," according to a UK Health Security Agency publication.
A study of UK health data cited showed, according to the report, that "the risk of hospitalization for omicron cases is reduced after two and three doses of the vaccine, with the risk of hospitalization after three doses being 81 per cent lower than for unvaccinated omicron cases." .
But do all vaccines protect against omicron infection equally well?
New evidence suggests that is not the case.
Booster vaccination the best protection against omicron so far
The corona vaccine preparations from the manufacturers Biontech/Pfizer, Moderna, Astrazeneca, Johnson & Johnson and Novavax have so far been approved in Germany. The vaccines from Moderna and Biontech are mRNA vaccines, those from Astrazeneca and Johnson & Johnson are vector vaccines and Nuvaxovid from the manufacturer Novavax is a protein vaccine.
According to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the preparations can be equated with inactivated vaccines
. The reason for this, according to the RKI: They do not contain any viruses capable of reproduction.
The acute question at present is which of the approved vaccines offers the best protection against omicron. dr Rolf Hömke, research spokesman for the Association of Research-Based Drug Manufacturers (vfa), provides information in a podcast episode of the
"The initial vaccination consisting of two injections is not enough, but if a booster vaccination is added, then there are so many antibodies that are there too grab the omicron, that you have good protection again”. This statement coincides with the statement of many physicians and virologists. Prof. Franz-Xaver Reichl, among others, as the representative for the biological safety of bacteria and viruses at the Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich, appealed to the citizens: "
Optimal protection against Omikron only occurs after the third vaccination.
(...) That is why it is now very, very important to boost as soon as possible
However, every vaccination dose, even if it is the second, is better than none, according to the virus expert.
Because the vaccination can effectively prevent severe courses with hospital stays.
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Do inactivated vaccines work against omicron?
The inactivated vaccines CoronaVac from China and VAL2001 from Europe are currently in the EU approval process. An inactivated vaccine from Sinopharm has already been approved in China. The principle behind this type of vaccine: The body is confronted with killed corona viruses or their components and thus stimulates an immune reaction.
However, the archetype of Sars-CoV-2 or earlier variants of the virus were used for the production of the currently tested inactivated vaccines - not the omicron variant
. As the science
further informs, a research team from the University of Hong Kong has investigated how this affects the protective effect of inactivated vaccines against omicron.
The result was sobering.
Using blood sera from vaccinated people, it was determined how well the inactivated vaccine CoronaVac and the mRNA vaccine from Biontech protect against Omikron.
The total of 50 study participants were fully vaccinated.
The test tube showed that the antibodies from the blood sera of the 25 Biontech vaccinees were less able to neutralize the omicron virus than the virus wild types.
The neutralization rate was reduced by up to 39 percent, reports
In no single case had the inactivated vaccine CoronaVac resulted in antibodies effective against omicron being found in the blood serum.
Larger-scale studies must now follow to examine the omicron effectiveness of inactivated vaccines more closely.
Vaccines are adapted to Omicron
The manufacturers of the vaccines already approved in Germany are currently examining how good the protection against Omikron is after vaccination with their preparations.
Biontech and Pfizer, Astrazeneca, Moderna and Novavax have already started
developing a version of their vaccines adapted to
Omicron , according to the association of research-based pharmaceutical companies.
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