Is the Mu COVID Variant Vaccine Resistant?
The Mu COVID-19 variant, which was first discovered in Colombia earlier this year, has recently been designated as a “Variant of Interest” (VOI) by the World Health Organization (WHO.)
According to certain media accounts, the variety may be more capable of eluding our immune defenses than other SARS-CoV-2 virus variants. Is it, however, more resistant to the COVID-19 vaccine?
A VOI exhibits “genetic alterations that are predicted or known to affect virus features such as transmissibility, illness severity, immunological escape, diagnostic or therapeutic escape,” according to the WHO classification.
A VOI has also been identified as causing “significant community transmission or multiple COVID-19 clusters, in multiple countries with increasing relative prevalence alongside increasing number of cases over time, or other apparent epidemiological impacts to suggest an emerging risk to global public health,” according to the researchers.
Mu has been found in at least 40 countries, but it is likely to account for less than 1% of all new infections worldwide.
While there have been large outbreaks in some countries, like as Colombia, Mu appears to have been beaten by the highly transmissible Delta strain in many places.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s COVID tracker, the Delta variation now accounts for more than 99 percent of new cases in the United States, whereas Mu accounts for only about 0.1 percent.
Despite this, the Mu variety has attracted a lot of attention since it has certain potentially dangerous alterations.
The changes E484K and K417N, for example, have been linked to the virus’s ability to avoid antibodies against the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19.
According to Luke O’Neil, a professor of biochemistry at Trinity College Dublin in Northern Ireland, Mu possesses multiple additional mutations, the effects of which are still unclear.
While Mu’s mutations may give it the ability to elude the body’s immune response to some extent, the little evidence suggests that immunizations will not be made fully ineffective against the variety.
Dr. Vinod Balasubramaniam, a virologist at Monash University Malaysia’s Jeffrey Cheah School of Medicine & Health Sciences, told the Science Media Centre in Australia that there isn’t much evidence on whether Mu can overcome “pre-existing” immunity.
Balasubramaniam mentioned a Rome-based study. This is a condensed version of the information.