Vaccines may be more effective against Brazilian variant than previously thought, study suggests


Vaccines currently in use in the UK may be more effective against the Brazilian variant of coronavirus than previously thought, a new study suggests.

The research, which has not yet been peer-reviewed, found the Oxford/AstraZeneca and Pfizer/BioNTRech vaccines may not need to be modified to combat the spread of the P1 Brazil strain.

Scientists from Oxford University measured the level of antibodies that can neutralise coronavirus variants circulating in South Africa, Brazil and elsewhere.

They found that although vaccines do not work as well againast the variants as against the original strain of coronavirus, the P1 Brazilian variant may be less resistant to vaccine-induced antibodies than first feard.

“This study extends our understanding the role of changes in the spike protein in escape from the human immune response, measured as neutralising antibody levels,” said Professor Gavin Screaton, lead scientist on the study.


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