Expert warns of jabs' limits

Expert warns of jabs' limits

A resident of Watthana district in Bangkok is on April 7, 2021, injected with vaccine against Covid-19 at the Sang Thip sports complex on Soi Pridi Banomyong 2. (Photo by Somchai Poomlard)
A resident of Watthana district in Bangkok is on April 7, 2021, injected with vaccine against Covid-19 at the Sang Thip sports complex on Soi Pridi Banomyong 2. (Photo by Somchai Poomlard)

An expert is warning that the African and Brazilian variants of the Covid-19 virus must be prevented from spreading in the country, as several reports suggest that currently available vaccines aren't fully effective against the mutated strains of the coronavirus.

The head of Chulalongkorn University's Centre of Excellence in Clinical Virology, Yong Poovorawan, said the mutated variants' surfaces are covered by protein spikes which differ to the ones that coat the surface of strains discovered earlier on in the pandemic.

The proteins give the mutated virus a different shape, which a vaccinated individual's immune system can't recognise as easily as strains on which the vaccines were based on, Dr Yong said.

"As such, we have to be cautious about which novel variants are being 'imported' into our country," Dr Yong said at a press conference at the Public Health Ministry yesterday.

Dr Yong suggested enhanced quarantine measures as the first line of defence against the mutated strains, although he also noted their limitations -- as evidenced by the presence of the UK strain in Thailand despite best efforts to keep it out.

He also urged the public to be less concerned about what vaccines they will get, as all vaccines have been clinically proven to be safe and significantly reduce the number of patients suffering from severe symptoms.

"We can be assured about the quality and efficacy of the vaccines, including those that we have here in Thailand," he said.

Do you like the content of this article?
COMMENT (59)

Pentagon tracking Chinese spy balloon over US

WASHINGTON: The Pentagon said Thursday that it was tracking a Chinese spy balloon flying high over the United States that appeared to be surveilling highly sensitive nuclear weapons sites.

08:45

France arrests suspected Italian mafia killer after 16 years on run: Interpol

SAINT-ÉTIENNE, France: A convicted Italian killer, believed to belong to one of the country's most powerful mafia organisations, was arrested on Thursday in France after 16 years on the run, Interpol said.

08:45

EV battery excise tax to be reduced to 1%

A national committee on electronic vehicle policy, also known as the EV board, on Thursday agreed in principle on a proposal to lower the excise tax on EV batteries from the current 8% to just 1% while offering a 24-billion-baht subsidy to the EV battery-producing industry.

08:10