Reduced interferon antagonism but similar drug sensitivity in Omicron variant compared to Delta variant SARS-CoV-2 isolates

  • The SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant is currently causing a large number of infections in many countries. A number of antiviral agents are approved or in clinical testing for the treatment of COVID-19. Despite the high number of mutations in the Omicron variant, we here show that Omicron isolates display similar sensitivity to eight of the most important anti-SARS-CoV-2 drugs and drug candidates (including remdesivir, molnupiravir, and PF-07321332, the active compound in paxlovid), which is of timely relevance for the treatment of the increasing number of Omicron patients. Most importantly, we also found that the Omicron variant displays a reduced capability of antagonising the host cell interferon response. This provides a potential mechanistic explanation for the clinically observed reduced pathogenicity of Omicron variant viruses compared to Delta variant viruses.

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Author:Denisa BojkovaORCiDGND, Marek WideraORCiDGND, Sandra CiesekORCiDGND, Mark N. WassORCiD, Martin MichaelisORCiDGND, Jindrich CinatlORCiDGND
Parent Title (English):bioRxiv
Document Type:Preprint
Year of Completion:2022
Year of first Publication:2022
Publishing Institution:Universit├Ątsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2023/03/21
Page Number:14
Institutes:Medizin / Medizin
Dewey Decimal Classification:6 Technik, Medizin, angewandte Wissenschaften / 61 Medizin und Gesundheit / 610 Medizin und Gesundheit
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - CC BY-NC-ND - Namensnennung - Nicht kommerziell - Keine Bearbeitungen 4.0 International