NewsOmikron: Virologist Drosten reports "good" Corona news

Omikron: Virologist Drosten reports "good" Corona news

The omicron variant of the coronavirus is spreading extremely quickly. There are now data that give hope for a milder course after infection.

Berlin – Germany is celebrating Christmas for the second time in times of the corona virus. This year it is the so-called omicron variant that prevents a carefree celebration for many people. The Corona variant, discovered for the first time in South Africa, is considered to be much more contagious and, according to many Virolog: inside, could soon cause an extreme increase in the number of infections in Germany, as is currently the case in Great Britain.

But there is evidence that the omicron variant has properties that are advantageous in the pandemic. Germany’s top virologist Christian Drosten points out current studies on variant B.1.1.529 via Twitter – and gives some hope.

Virologe Christian Drosten

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Virologist Christian Drosten shares the latest findings on the Omikron variant of the coronavirus on Twitter. (Archive image)

Omicron variant: Virologist Drosten reports positive news

“Groundbreaking study by Neil Ferguson on Omikron,” wrote the chief virologist at the Charité in Berlin on December 22, 2021 on Twitter. “Unvaccinated people have about 24% less risk of Krh ingestion when infected with Omikron vs. Delta. Omikron is therefore somewhat weaker than Delta. Something. The difference in severe courses is still unclear. “

The study by Imperial College London, to which Drosten refers, is one of numerous studies that are currently dealing with the omicron variant of the coronavirus. The mutant is currently causing an increase in the number of infections almost all over the world. In Great Britain alone, 100,000 new infections have now been reported within one day for the first time.

The current study, led by Professor Neil Ferguson, focused primarily on the proportion of hospitalizations for infections compared to the Delta variant. For this purpose, all positive corona cases in England that were detected by means of a PCR test were examined from December 1 to 14, and the course of the disease was compared. A distinction was also made according to the length of hospital stays.

At Christian Drosten, the results provide a slight degree of optimism. The risk of hospitalization with the Omikron variant is 20 to 25 percent lower compared to Delta. There are also differences in how long a patient has to stay in the hospital. The number of stays in the hospital that lasted one night or longer has even fallen by 40 to 45 percent. One downer, however, is the increased infection rate of Omikron, which should ensure a significant increase in the number of infections in the near future, so that the health system could still be overloaded.

Omicron variant: new data on the effectiveness of the corona vaccination

In addition, the study also notes that the results would have to be examined with regard to a previous corona vaccination and the natural build-up of immunity as a result of a previous infection. In both Great Britain and South Africa, large parts of the infected had already acquired a certain immunity to Omikron through a previous infection. A previous corona infection generally helps. As the report on the investigation shows, the hospitalization rate is reduced by 50 percent if the infection is repeated. The risk of a longer stay, i.e. at least one day, even drops by up to 61 percent.

There is also new knowledge regarding the corona vaccines from Biontech / Pfizer and Astrazeneca. The risk of hospitalization for people who have been twice vaccinated with the Biontech vaccine is therefore similar to the Delta variant when infected with Omikron. Anyone who has received two vaccinations with the Astrazeneca vaccine has a fundamentally lower risk with the Omikron variant than with Delta.

Omicron variant: data give hope for a mild course of the disease

The following day Drosten spoke again on Twitter, this time with new findings from researcher Andrew Lilley for New South Wales in Australia. There “almost 95% of adults are double vaccinated”, which reduces the rate of hospital admissions at Omikron by more than half compared to Delta, wrote Drosten. “Sure, you always have to say: a rapid increase in incidence will negate the effect. But still enjoyable! “

Studies show which corona vaccines work best against the Omikron variant.

The studies to which Christian Drosten refers give hope for a mild course of the disease in the Omikron variant. But at the same time, the observations should not be overestimated, warn the researchers at London’s Imperial College. The amount of data is not yet large enough to have final certainty about the Omikron variant. (lrg)

Header list image: © xim.gs/Imago

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