The study found that Sinopharm’s COVID-19 vaccine elicited a weaker antibody response to the Delta variant. This is based on the first published study of its effect on the more infectious variant.
A laboratory study based on samples from people in Sri Lanka showed antibody levels in people who received Sinopharm’s BBIBP-CorV vaccine had a 1.38-fold reduction in the Delta variant compared to the original version of the coronavirus first identified in Wuhan.
The study was carried out by scientists from Sri Jayewardenepura University as well as Colombo City Council in Sri Lanka, and Oxford University in the UK.
The Delta variant was first discovered in India late last year. Since then, the delta variant has become the dominant version of the virus worldwide and is behind the recent spike in infections reported in many countries including the UK, Indonesia, the United States and South Korea. The variant has been detected in more than 90 countries worldwide.
The study published on Monday (19/7) showed the vaccine from Sinopharm, as it is officially known as China National Pharmaceutical Group, also showed a 10-fold more pronounced reduction in antibody levels against the Beta variant, which was first discovered in South Africa.
The researchers said they found no significant difference in antibody levels to the two variants of the blood serum of vaccinated people compared with the serum of those who had been naturally infected.
This suggests that the Sinopharm vaccine may be able to induce an antibody-based response to the two variants similar to the levels seen after natural infection, according to the paper. [ah/au/ft]