It is good news that Omicron's symptoms may not be so severe, but there is also worrying news. New omicron mutations that are not identified by conventional diagnostic tests have been discovered in several countries.
Reporter Kwak Sang-eun will tell you the details.
PCR test confirms that the coronavirus mutation does not respond to a specific gene, so it can be inferred whether it is an micron mutation.
A genomic test that analyzes genetic information is additionally required for accurate confirmation, but it can screen out suspicious patients to some extent during the PCR test stage.
However, unlike the current PCR test, a new type of omicron mutation that is indistinguishable from other mutations has been identified.
The Guardian, a British daily, reported that the so-called 'stealth' micron mutation, which cannot be identified by PCR tests, was recently confirmed in South Africa, Australia and Canada.
There are concerns that it will become an obstacle in preventing the spread of Omicron, but experts say that a pessimistic outlook is premature.
[Ki-Jong Hong / Editor-in-Chief of the Korean Vaccine Society: Although the Omicron mutant has several characteristics that can avoid the existing PCR method, the diagnostic method is also changed according to the mutant, so it will be improved again.]
In the midst of this, researchers at the African Health Research Institute found that in an experiment to measure the effectiveness of the Pfizer vaccine, neutralizing antibodies decreased by 1/41 when infected with the Omicron mutation compared to when infected with the coronavirus, which was first discovered in China at the end of 2019.
[Willem Hanecomb/Director of the African Health Research Institute: Omicron mutations may evade some of the immunity that protects us after virus infection.] The
research team, however, reiterated the importance of vaccination, saying that the weakened immunity can be compensated by booster shots. emphasized.
(Video Edit: Yonghwa Jung)
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