Tsiodra “bomb”: The vaccine will not cover certain coronavirus mutations
Sotiris Tsiodras in his statements stressed that it is very possible that the vaccine does not cover all the mutations of the coronavirus.
Mr. Tsiodras presented the latest scientific developments on the vaccination campaign in Greece and the world, referring to a study of vaccination intention in the Greek population, from which it appeared that 72% of Greeks say “yes” to the vaccine.
“The vaccine may not cover some mutations – we are not worried!”
Commenting on the delays in the delivery of Pfizer vaccines in January, the professor said, “we do not know exactly when we will have the vaccines to be vaccinated.”
“With the data so far, the vaccine seems to be effectively covering mutations in the United Kingdom. However, there are mutations for which there is an ongoing scientific discussion, as to whether they will affect the effectiveness of the vaccine “, the Professor noted and added:
“One thing is for sure. “The sooner we vaccinate – and in the right way – the population, the more likely we are to avoid the dispersal and development of new resistant strains.”
He did not rule out the possibility of it happening with the coronavirus, the same thing that happens every year with the flu vaccine. That is, to have a prior identification of the strains that prevail in each epidemic, so that the vaccine is modified accordingly each year.
“Maybe we will get into a situation where we will test the virus for mutations every year for the effectiveness of the vaccine, with a network similar to the flu, and we will issue instructions on how to make the vaccine every year,” he said. Science now has the know-how to tackle this hurdle, he added.
The effectiveness of the vaccine is inextricably linked to the vaccination strategy
The issue of vaccine efficacy is inextricably linked to the vaccination strategy implemented in each country and mainly to unbalanced or as yet unknown factors related to immunity, the Professor explained.
The 95% efficiency of the studies showed, “it remains to be applied in the real world,” he said, while to reach safe conclusions, scientists use special mathematical models. “It’s too complicated,” he admitted.
“Too many factors play a role, e.g. immunity in the general population, if one is to vaccinate adults only, remember that it is a vaccine that has not been approved in children and most Covid vaccines have not been extensively tested in children. “Therefore, depending on the factors that one takes into account, the percentage of the population that should be vaccinated can range from 45% to 85%”, explained Mr. Tsiodras.
The duration of immunity
The duration of immunity – whether it comes from the natural disease or from the vaccine – is another unbalanced factor, he noted: “At the moment we are vaccinating people who have passed the disease. They talk about the vaccine for one or two years of immunity. We do not know the exact truth we will learn in the future. “What we are taking for granted now is that immunity to the coronavirus itself, in quite large studies, seems to last at least 8 months and based on functional immunity it may last for several years,” he said.
Regarding Sotiris Tsiodras’ predictions for the future? “The coronavirus is here to stay. So it seems and depends on many factors in the future: it is related to the duration of immunity to the virus, the effectiveness of the vaccine in reducing the spread, the seasonality and the difference it brings to the spread of the virus and of course the choices made by governments and individuals. We do not know when it will end “.
Lockdown and prohibitions, people are tired and can not comply, the Professor acknowledged and stressed that the State must find ways to help the community and scientists “to invest more time in understanding even more, what works, when it works, how does it work. “Instead of hitting the epidemic with a hammer, we should hit it in the best and most surgical way possible and with more data.”
The crisis does not affect states equally
Speaking about the observance of the measures, he sounded the alarm and said that the mobility of the population can affect the spread of the virus. The strategy is to adhere to the measures of distancing while simultaneously vaccinating the population. “This ensures a low and stable infection rate and thus balances the negative effects on public health and social and economic costs,” he said.
Commenting on the evolution of the pandemic in other countries of the world, he said that it does not affect all equally: “We see, there are big second and third waves in Europe and the United Kingdom, in Germany 1,600 and 1,400 deaths in one day. “Lockdown in the United States.”
Professor Sotiris Tsiodras closed his speech with a wish: “Let us hope that we will have a better 2021. The mask is difficult. I wear it from 16 to 18 hours a day. I wear it at the Ministry or wherever I am. “Let’s hope that at some point we will be able to bring it out, with the success of vaccinations and immunity now at the population level, to reach high levels,” he said.
Source: διαφορετικό by www.diaforetiko.gr.
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