Covid-19: Delta variant, Novavax, "maskne", all about the latest research news

A woman is vaccinated against Covid-19 in Nantes.



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4 min

In France, concerns around the Delta variant are growing: The Ministry of Health announces that 2 to 4% of infections are due to the Delta variant, originating in India.

But a study, published this week, shows the effectiveness of vaccines on this variant.


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By Celia Gueuti

The study is Scottish, a fertile ground for research since the Delta variant is in the majority. Two vaccines have been tested, that of Pfizer and Astrazeneca. After two doses, they are almost as effective on the variant as on the original.

96% efficiency for Pfizer and 92% for Astrazeneca


It was not won, since a study published slightly before by the English public health showed that with a single dose there was a big difference:

The vaccines were 17% less effective

on the Delta variant. “ 

It was expected

,” explains Dr. Jean-Daniel Lelièvre, Immunologist at Créteil hospital.

Pieces of the virus have been introduced that encode the Spike protein, or Specule protein, of the historic Wuhan strain. The variant in essence is different. Giving a single dose of vaccine does not sufficiently stimulate the immune response. 

»Boosting, or waiting longer after a single dose, allows the body time to understand the appropriate immune response to the situation. 

There is still an advantage to this data: it comes from real life.

Unlike the efficacy tests given by the laboratories, it is not the immune response of the subjects that is evaluated, but the vaccinations, infections and hospitalizations throughout Scotland.

This gives a better idea of ​​the impact of a vaccine.

A new vaccine on the market

The American laboratory Novavax has completed phase three of testing its vaccine and proudly announces 93% effectiveness

against the coronavirus and its main variants


It uses a recombinant vaccine of nanoparticles. He is the first to do so. It sounds complicated but it's simple. As with all vaccines, this involves training the body to respond to a virus. He is presented with a harmless version, so that when he crosses the real virus, there is an immune response already ready. Here the version presented is not even a virus but just an assembly of S proteins. As

they are characteristic of Covid

, the body will recognize them later.

So far the laboratory has only published a press release which gives an overview of the results: This vaccine would be as effective as that of Pfizer, with fewer side effects.

We are therefore still awaiting the publication of the data in a scientific journal with a reading committee ...

Maskne, a name for a set of dermatological reactions

And in France, outdoor masks are down from this Thursday, June 17, as announced by Jean Castex.

A decision hailed by all those who were irritated by the protections, metaphorically but also literally since

some people develop red patches or pimples on the mask ... In English we speak of


, a


word with mask and acne.

And the

British Medical Journal has just devoted a study to it


In fact, we put under this name, different reactions: eczema, allergies, or irritant contact dermatitis, a kind of inflammation.

The first affected are people

with sensitive skin and especially those who must wear the mask for more than six hours.

In Thailand 54% of hospital staff report having red patches.

In the long run, the mask creates a humid, hot and friction environment on the face: perfect for bacteria to thrive.

But do not panic, if this is your case, the advice of the doctors is simple, take off your mask regularly, when no one is around you.


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