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Pfizer Vaccine Effective On UK COVID-19 Strain: Reports

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The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines for COVID-19 have proved effective on the new highly transmissible coronavirus strains found in the United Kingdom and South Africa, according to a study. 

The study which has not been peer-reviewed yet has been conducted by the pharma giant Pfizer and research scientists from the University of Texas Medical Branch. It was found that the vaccine is able to neutralise the N501Y mutation found in the UK strain. 

Recently, there have been concerns about the highly transmissible UK strain and that vaccines approved for coronavirus may not work on them. Pfizer vaccine’s scientist Phil Dormitzer spoke to Reuters about the same. It has been found that the study has not taken into account all the mutation of the virus. Although the vaccine seems to work on 16 mutations as per the study. 

“So we’ve now tested 16 different mutations, and none of them have really had any significant impact. That’s the good news,” Dormitzer said. He also added that the results of the study don’t assure that the vaccine will be effective on all the mutations. 

The researchers are going to reveal more test results after testing other mutations found in Uk and South Africa in the coming weeks. 

An associate professor in cellular microbiology at the University of Reading, Simon Clarke, said the variant one found in South Africa has additional mutations.

The Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna vaccine are going to be tweaked in the next six weeks to address the new variants of the virus found recently, the scientists said.