Effectiveness of mRNA vaccines against the Alpha and Beta variants in France

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In a new study, scientists show that the two-dose vaccination regimen of mRNA vaccines provides 88 percent protection against non-variant virus, 86 percent against the Alpha variant, and 77 percent against the Beta variant.
Over the past six months, the World Health Organization has categorized four SARS-CoV-2 variants as being "of concern" because they are more transmissible or may escape the immune response. They have been termed the Alpha, Beta, Gamma and Delta variants.

Scientists from the Institut Pasteur, in collaboration with the French National Health Insurance Fund (CNAM), Ipsos and Santé publique France, conducted a nationwide case-control study to evaluate the effectiveness of mRNA vaccines against symptomatic forms of SARS-CoV-2 infection, be that non-variant virus or the Alpha and Beta variants. The results show that the two-dose vaccination regimen of mRNA vaccines provides 88% protection against non-variant virus, 86% against the Alpha variant and 77% against the Beta variant. The results of this study were published in The Lancet Regional Health Europe on July 14, 2021.

In late 2020, two new variants of SARS-CoV-2 were reported in the United Kingdom and in South Africa, respectively. This occurred at a time when the United Kingdom was experiencing a resurgence in the incidence of SARS-CoV-2 infections. This was later attributed to the emergence of the Alpha variant, which has now demonstrated increased transmissibility as compared to the original SARS-CoV-2. The Beta variant was first reported in South Africa and later identified to carry a mutation known as E484K and which is associated with immune evasion. The reporting of the first SARS-CoV-2 variants occurred as mass COVID-19 vaccination campaigns were commencing at global level. In France, both…
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