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BioNTech-Pfizer Vaccine Is Likely To Protect People From New Variant

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The company behind Pfizer-BioNTech says that the vaccine they produced can protect people from the new COVID-19 variant.

If needed, the vaccine can be re-engineered in a matter of weeks, said BioNTech’s representative.

Currently, the new variant of the virus is 70% quicker to spread, as it received high numbers of people contracting it from the south-east of England.

Some other parts of Europe that harbor this virus is Denmark, Netherlands, and South-Africa.

VOC-202012/01, the name of the variant contains 23 mutations, a particularly large sum all in one time, which biologically can turn more and more unstable and cause them to behave unpredictably.

“Scientifically, it is highly likely that [the] immune response by this vaccine also can deal with the new virus variant”, Ugur Sahin, chief executive of BioNTech, said at a news conference in Germany.

The company also claims that they have the technology to process the vaccine quickly if necessary.

“The beauty of the Messenger RNA technology is that we can directly start to engineer a vaccine which completely mimics this new mutation – we could be able to provide a new vaccine technically within six weeks, so that means a vaccine which contains this information,” Mr. Sahin said.

Mr. Sahin is confident that their vaccine could provide necessary protection against the new variant of the COVID-19.

Source: BBC

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“I Chose To Get Vaccinated With The Second Group of Frontliners Here” – Tun Dr. Mahathir

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The vaccination program for COVID-19 is going smoothly and according to plan lately in Malaysia. One little problem that this country has would be to convince many people to take the vaccine because as many people know, there are certain individuals that are still refusing to get the vaccine even though it is for their own safety. There are misinformation everywhere that makes them even unconvinced to got the vaccine injection. Luckily, many people who have taken the vaccine prove that it will definitely do not bring any negative consequences towards the body.

One of them is Malaysia’s former prime minister that is Tun Dr. Mahathir who is a 96-year-old individual and he has finally received his first COVID-19 vaccination injection today at the Vaccination Centre located in Langkawi where he is the MP there. Tun Dr. Mahathir is actually categorized under the high-risk category individuals and his action has proved that there is definitely nothing to be worried about by receiving the vaccine.

According to his tweet, Tun Dr. Mahathir stated that he chose to get vaccinated for COVID-19 together with the second group of frontliners here in Langkawi after all the ones in the first group have been vaccinated before.

He said, “As a senior citizen, I want to ask those not only in the same age group as mine but also the younger ones to get vaccinated when their turn comes. This is an initiative that all of us must support”. He also added, “We want more people to be vaccinated to help curb the Covid19 pandemic. Alhamdulillah after the injection I did not feel anything unusual”.

Sources: Twitter Tun Dr. Mahathir

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Two Individuals Infected With Nigerian Covid-19 Variant In Malaysia Discovered – MOH

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Recently, the Ministry Of Health Malaysia (MOH) has discovered the first two cases of individuals that got infected with the Nigerian Variant of SARS-CoV-2 or also known as B1.525 in this country. The detected cases are actually from two foreigners who just arrived in Malaysia from Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Both of them were found to be tested Covid-19 positive through the RT PCR Covid-19 swab test.

For a better recognition, The Institute for Medical Research (IMR) then performed a full genome sequencing as it takes into account both of the foreigner’s travel history. The Nigerian COVID-19 variant was first detected in the UK and also Nigeria in the month of December 2020.

MOH also stated that these discovered Nigerian variants can cause an increase in the likelihood as well as a possible decrease in the immune response. Worry not because MOH reassured that IMR and CPRC will continue to monitor the development of the virus mutation and to inform the public from time to time.

Other than that, they also reminded that even though the national immunization program is going smoothly, public health actions are still required as herd immunity has still not been achieved yet.

Sources: Twitter MOH

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UK To Fast-Track Modified Coronavirus Vaccines To Fight New Variants

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LONDON, March 5 – Future vaccines that have been tweaked to deal with new coronavirus variants will be fast-tracked for authorisation, Britain’s medicines and health care regulator announced Thursday, reported Xinhua news agency.

“We have a clear goal that future vaccine modifications that respond to new variants of coronavirus can be made in the shortest possible time without compromising safety, quality or effectiveness,” June Raine, chief executive of the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), said in a statement.

According to the new guidance, the three-phase safety trials required for the original coronavirus vaccines won’t be needed but manufacturers must provide robust evidence that the modified vaccine triggers an immune response.

Christian Schneider, chief scientific officer at the MHRA, said: “The public should be confident that no vaccine would be approved unless the expected high standards of safety, quality and effectiveness are met.”

Currently, both the Oxford-AstraZeneca and Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines have reportedly shown to be effective against the variant that first emerged in Britain late last year.

However, experts have raised concerns over the efficacy of current vaccines in the variants rst found in South Africa and Brazil, which have both been detected in Britain.

Six cases of P1 variant related to Brazil have been found in Britain, including three in England and three in Scotland.

More than 20.7 million people in Britain have been given the first jab of the coronavirus vaccine, according to the latest official figures.

At present, England is under the third national lockdown since the outbreak of the pandemic in the country. Similar restriction measures are also in place in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

On Feb 22, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced his long-anticipated “roadmap” exiting the lockdown. Schools in England will reopen from Monday next week as the first part of the four-step plan, which Johnson said was designed to be “cautious but irreversible”.

To bring life back to normal, countries such as Britain, China, Germany, Russia and the United States have been racing against time to roll out coronavirus vaccines.

Source: BERNAMA

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