The Omicron variant of the coronavirus can partially evade the protection from Pfizer Inc and partner BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine, Bloomberg News reported on Tuesday, citing the research head of a laboratory at Africa Health Research Institute in South Africa.
Its evasion is not complete and a booster shot could provide additional protection, according to the report, citing Alex Sigal, head of the lab.
The Omicron variant, first detected in southern Africa last month, has triggered alarms globally of another surge in infections, with more than two dozen countries from Japan to the United States reporting cases.
The World Health Organization on Nov. 26 classified it as a "variant of concern," but said there was no evidence to support the need for new vaccines specifically designed to tackle the Omicron variant with its many mutations.
Sigal did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.
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