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Swiss researchers found antibodies against omicron variants

The Lausanne University Hospital (Chuv) and the ETH Lausanne (EPFL) have discovered a new monoclonal antibody that neutralizes the omicron variants of the coronavirus. This finding, published in the journal Nature Microbiology, opens new avenues for preventive and therapeutic applications.

In monkeys, the new antibody has shown therapeutic efficacy and complete protection when used prophylactically, Chuv said in a statement. These results offer new perspectives for protecting people at risk, especially people with immunodeficiency. The antibody, designated P2G3, was isolated from an infected and twice-vaccinated donor. It showed very strong neutralizing activity against all Corona variants of concern, including Omicron.

By binding to a specific region of the spike protein, the antibody can prevent the virus from attaching itself to the receptor present on the target cells affected by the infection. This binding also prevents the antibody – unlike all previously approved antibodies – from mutations in all variants.

This research was conducted before the appearance of the omicron variants BA.4 and BA.5. However, recent data indicate that the antibody retains its neutralizing activity, according to the release. Clinical studies starting in August 2022 should confirm this.

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