Omicron clones in human bronchi 70 times faster than Delta . variant

Research by scientists in Hong Kong (China) also shows that the Omicron variant reproduces worse in human lung tissue than the original virus strain, probably related to the low severity of the disease. than.

However, the professor who led the study warned that the “overall threat from the Omicron variant could be significant”.

Regarding the Omicron variant, one million people could be quarantined on Christmas Day.

It is important that “the severity of disease in humans is determined not only by viral replication but also by the host’s immune response to infection,” said Dr. Michael Chan Chi-wa. .

He added: “It is also important to note that, by infecting many people, a highly contagious virus can cause more severe illness and death even though the virus itself may be less pathogenic.

Therefore, combined with our recent studies, it can be seen that, the Omicron variant has the ability to partially evade immunity from vaccines and people who have had the disease in the past, a total threat. The possible Omicron variation can be very significant“.

Omicron clones in human bronchi 70 times faster than Delta variant - Photo 1.

Omicron replicates in human bronchi 70 times faster than the Delta variant and the original virus strain (Image: AP)

Research published by the LKS Faculty of Medicine at the University of Hong Kong (HKUMed) shows that researchers have successfully isolated this variant and used the removed lung tissue for treatment to investigate the new mutation. .

The study found that Omicron “replicated faster than the original SARS-CoV-2 virus strain and Delta variant in human bronchi”. Accordingly, within 24 hours of infection, the Omicron variant “replicated about 70 times faster than the Delta variant and the original SARS-CoV-2 virus strain”.

In contrast, the Omicron variant replicated less efficiently (10-fold lower) in human lung tissue than the parent strain SARS-CoV-2, which may indicate lower disease severity.

Reacting to the study, senior clinical lecturer at the University of Exeter, Dr David Strain said: “The 70-fold increase in cloning is concerning, which explains the increased transmissibility. However, it is not yet clear how the 10-fold reduction in lung infectivity in this laboratory study would actually work out in patients. “But if the virus could replicate 70 times faster but infect 10 times slower, that would still lead to a seven-fold increased risk of disease.”

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