Two new mutations of COVID-19 were identified over the past few weeks – raising fears that the current vaccine may not be effective against these new strains. But now, new lab tests have confirmed that the Pfizer vaccine – which was the first to be approved – is likely to protect against the new mutant strain which has spread rapidly throughout the UK.
The news comes after results from blood tests of participants in trails proved more extensive than those of UK drugmakers that came out last week. The US tests undertaken by the University of Texas suggest the Pfizer vaccine will be effective -with samples of 20 people showing signs of antibodies being produced to fight off the new strain.
The Pfizer tests also revealed that the vaccine was effective against one key mutation, called N501Y, found in both the new variants in Britain and South Africa. The latest study – that still needs to be peer-reviewed – was conducted on 10 mutations which are characteristic of the B117 variant that has been roaring across Britain.
The news provides new hope that a new vaccine won’t be required, as the number of COVID deaths continues to soar across the country. Just this week, the UK recorded record numbers of COVID-related deaths, with cases slowly decreasing as the country remains in lockdown.