Scientists in Brazil have discovered a new variant of coronavirus that combines 18 mutations.The new super variant made headlines at a critical time when Brazil registered record-high single-day COVID-19 deaths with more than 4,000.
Scientists say this mutant COVID-19 strain is resistant to Pfizer vaccine
The study observed close to 400 individuals who had previously tested positive for the COVID-19 virus after already receiving a dose of the vaccine. Then it compared the results to a similar number of people who were infected but had not yet taken the vaccine.
The findings ended up showing that the strain found in South Africa – known as B.1.135 – was eight times more rampant in individuals that had already taken both doses of the vaccine produced by Pfizer and BioNTech.
Vaccine-resistant COVID-19 strain detected in Mississippi
Scientists are concerned about the variant because clinical trials of the three vaccines approved in the U.S. are showing that they offer less protection against B.1.351 than other variants. People who recover from COVID-19 may be reinfected if exposed to B.1.351 because one of its mutations makes it harder for antibodies to latch onto.
This biotech start-up is working overtime to develop a second-wave, mutation-resistant Covid-19 vaccine
“We need to keep going and develop more countermeasures — more broadly effective second-wave vaccines, therapeutics and tests. … The virus is very good at generating surprises,” Rajaniemi says.