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 - Sputnik International, 1920
Omicron COVID Strain
The new COVID variant was initially detected in South Africa and Botswana and sparked major concerns due to its high number of mutations (32). The WHO dubbed the strain Omicron and warned it may prove to be more transmissible and dangerous than other coronavirus variants.

Two Doses of Pfizer or Moderna Fail to Protect Against Omicron After 6 Months, Scientists Say

© REUTERS / DADO RUVICSyringe and vial labelled "coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine" and small toy figures are seen front of displayed new Pfizer logo in this illustration taken, June 24, 2021.
Syringe and vial labelled coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine and small toy figures are seen front of displayed new Pfizer logo in this illustration taken, June 24, 2021. - Sputnik International, 1920, 24.12.2021
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - A study by a group of scientists from the United States has found that two doses of COVID-19 vaccines from Pfizer or Moderna do not provide protection against the Omicron strain six months after the second vaccination.
The study is published on the bioRxiv portal of scientific research and has yet to be reviewed by peers.
"Following the 2nd dose, we observed a 30-fold reduction in neutralizing activity against the omicron variant. Through six months after the 2nd dose, none of the sera from naive vaccinated subjects showed neutralizing activity against the Omicron variant," the abstract read.
According to the study, after the second dose, the neutralizing activity of antibodies was reduced by 30 times amid contact with the Omicron variant, compared with other strains.
However, after a booster shot, the indicators reduced by only 14 times. Moreover, the third dose provided protection from the Omicron strain for over 90% of boosted subjects.
"These findings show that a 3rd dose is required to provide robust neutralizing antibody responses against the Omicron variant," the scientists said.
Omicron was first detected in South Africa in late November. The World Health Organization designated it a "variant of concern" due to exceptionally high number of mutations. Despite the new wave of travel bans on Africa, the new variant has since been detected in Europe, Asia, and the Americas.
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