A group of scientists at the University of Washington School of Medicine said they have found antibodies that can defeat the omicron variant and other future coronavirus strains.
- Antibodies specifically target regions of the coronavirus spike protein, which have remained unchanged since the virus mutated.
Per News-Medical, the scientists said they had identified the targets of the “broadly neutralizing” antibody on the spike protein. This means they could design future COVID-19 vaccines and antibody treatments against Omicron and other variants.
- “This finding tells us that there is a way to overcome the continued evolution of the virus, by focusing antibodies that target these highly conserved sites on the spike protein,” said David Wesler, professor of biochemistry at the University of Washington School of Medicine. an associate professor. Medicine in Seattle.
Wesler said researchers are still trying to figure out how the Ommicron variant caused so many mutations and how it learned to evade COVID-19 vaccines.
- Wesler said, “The main questions we were trying to answer were: How does this constellation of mutations in the oomicron variant’s spike protein affect the ability of the immune system to bind to cells and evade antibody responses? ”
This comes as a recent study by researchers at Columbia University found that the Omicron version of COVID-19 is “markedly resistant” to current COVID-19 vaccines and antibody treatments, as I wrote for Deseret News. wrote.
- A Columbia University study – which has not been peer-reviewed for Scientific Journal, meaning it is not conclusive data – found that natural antibodies from previous COVID-19 infections do not always inhibit the omicron variant.
- Similarly, a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that the Omicron variant can cause reinfection for those already infected in the pandemic.