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SARS-CoV-2 Variants B.1.351 and B.1.1.7 Show Resistance to Neutralizing Antibodies

The study's predictions are being

effective in its South Africa trial, where most

borne out with the first reported results

cases of COVID-19 are caused by the

of the Novavax vaccine, said Ho. " The

B.1.351 variant.

approximately 2-fold loss of neutralizing

The new study did not examine the more

activity against the U.K. variant is unlikely

recent variant found in Brazil (B.1.1.28) but

to have an adverse impact due to the large

given the similar spike mutations between

'cushion' of residual neutralizing antibody

the Brazil and South Africa variants, Ho said

activity, " Ho said, " and we see that reflected

the Brazil variant should behave similarly to
the South Africa variant.
They argue that SARS-CoV-2 is mutating


in a direction that may cause it to evade
current interventions that are directed
against the viral spike protein. " Our study

Novaris reported that the vaccine was nearly
90% effective in the company's U.K. trial, but
only 49.4% effective in its South Africa trial,
where most cases of COVID-19 are caused by
the B.1.351 variant.

and the new clinical trial data show that
the virus is traveling in a direction that
is causing it to escape from our current
vaccines and therapies that are directed
against the viral spike, " said Ho.

in the Novavax results where the vaccine
was 85.6% effective against the U.K. variant. "
Data from Ho's study about the loss in

" If the rampant spread of the virus
continues and more critical mutations
accumulate, then we may be condemned

neutralizing activity against the South Africa

to chasing after the evolving SARS-CoV-2

variant are more worrisome. " The drop in

continually, as we have long done for

neutralizing activity against the South Africa

influenza virus, " Ho explained. " We have to

variant is appreciable, and we're now seeing,

stop the virus from replicating and that

based on the Novavax results, that this is

means rolling out vaccine faster and sticking

causing a reduction in protective efficacy, "

to our mitigation measures like masking and

Ho said. The company reported on January

physical distancing. Stopping the spread

28 that the vaccine was nearly 90% effective

of the virus will stop the development of

in the company's U.K. trial, but only 49.4%

further mutations. " n

26 |


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