Not a few months pass before we hear about the emergence of a new mutated strain of the Corona virus, and although many of these strains were not dangerous, some of them, such as Delta, had tangible consequences for the health situation in the world.

Dr. Ashish Kumar Ja says in a report published by the American newspaper "New York Times" that the new mutated strain - known to scientists with the code "B.1.1.529" (B.1.1.529), which is now known to the press and opinion The general designation of the omicron mutant must be watched with care, because it can spread faster than the Delta strain, and may even infect vaccinators, so it is very important that world leaders deal quickly and decisively with all the available data on the spread of omicron.

In the coming days, and with the emergence of new details about this mutated strain, it will be easy for people to be divided between exaggerated fear or indifference entirely. In fact, we cannot give in to one of these two options, but the international community must take every new strain and information seriously. Grandpa.

Dr. Ashish adds that moving early is better than waiting until full information is obtained about this new strain, and it may turn out after a while that it is not faster in spreading than its predecessors, or that it is well affected by the vaccines that were distributed earlier.

He believes that the occurrence of these two hypotheses will make some say that the preemptive measures were exaggerated and unnecessary.

But in fact, the worst hypothesis should always be avoided, as if the biggest fears of scientists and doctors are realized and it turns out that the mutated strain Omicron spreads more quickly and penetrates the body’s immune system, then waiting until all the necessary data about it is completed will make us much behind in fighting it.

To answer the question of how much we should be concerned about Omicron, Dr. Ashish says there are 3 key questions that help scientists understand the potential consequences of each strain monitored.

Is the new mutation more rapid in spreading than the currently prevailing strain, which is Delta?

The preliminary data currently available seems worrying, as this new strain has spread very quickly in the country of South Africa, and now represents more than half of the samples that have been examined, and scientists are currently looking at other hypotheses, including the presence of another mutant similar to Omicron that spread in the previous period. And he suggested that the new mutant is spreading at such a strange speed.

There is not enough data to determine the extent to which vaccines can counteract Omicron (Reuters)

Could Omicron Cause More Critical Situations?

Doctors are still unable to be certain about this matter, because this strain is simply still new, and this will require monitoring and following up on cases that are being housed in hospitals, as well as examining samples to confirm the virus strain inside South Africa and in other countries concerned with this monitoring.

Will the body's immune defenses be unable to stand up to Omicron even after getting a vaccine or recovering from a previous infection?

The point that raises concerns more than others is the possibility of Omicron’s success in escaping the body’s immunity, and to clarify, scientists largely rule out that previous vaccines will completely lose their effectiveness in front of this new strain, and at the present time there is not enough data to determine the extent to which vaccines are able to address Omicron. , but there is cause for concern.

According to Dr. Ashish, this is the reason for the large number of mutations that occurred within this strain, specifically in the spike protein that the virus attaches to to enter human cells, and any effect of these mutations on the effectiveness of vaccines will make societies more vulnerable to the spread of infection and the multiplication of critical cases in hospitals, and it will be difficult Virus containment process.

He pointed out that the measures that the US administration hastened to take - such as banning travel from 8 African countries - can contribute to slowing the spread of the virus within US territory, but it sends negative signals to the country of South Africa, which did a good job when it was able to monitor this new strain. The information was provided to the international community.

Dr. Ashish advises taking other measures to prepare for a possible spread of the Omicron strain, including supporting scientific research that is currently being conducted to answer urgent questions about this mutated strain, because this work will give health authorities the ability to make correct decisions, and it is also advised to intensify genetic monitoring of the virus, to learn how Its development over time and slowing down its spread when it reaches a particular country.

Ashish also called on US leaders to start talking with vaccine manufacturers about the possibility of producing a new vaccine for the mutated strain Omicron to be distributed if things took a more serious turn.

In conclusion, Dr. Ashish urged the United States to lead global efforts to enable the people of the African continent to obtain a vaccine.