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China’s COVID-19 vaccine found capable of neutralizing UK strain
Jan 11. 2021A medical worker prepares for the COVID-19 vaccination at a temporary vaccination site in Haidian district of Beijing, Jan 6, 2021. [Photo/Xinhua]
By Zhang Zhihao
China’s COVID-19 vaccine is found capable of neutralizing the new strain of the novel coronavirus that was reported to be behind the rise in transmission of the disease in parts of the United Kingdom, senior health official said on Saturday.
Zeng Yixin, vice-minister of the National Health Commission, said China’s scientific community is paying close attention to the new variant and its effect on current vaccines as reports indicated that the new strain had arrived in China via imported cases.
Scientists from the Institute of Laboratory Animal Sciences of the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and the Sun Yat-sen University in Guangdong province are already working on the issue, Zeng said during a news briefing held by the State Council Information Office.
After examining the new viral strain and strains that existed in China from January to June last year, researchers found that the animal and human antibodies induced by China’s COVID-19 vaccine can neutralize the new variant, Zeng said, adding they have submitted their findings to scientific journals and is awaiting publication.
“This result has fortified our confidence that our vaccine can neutralize the mutated variant,” Zeng said. “At least for now, we know current mutations of SARS-CoV-2 will not affect the potency of vaccines. This point is very certain.”