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'We are already working on vaccine against Covid's Omicron variant': Pfizer CEO

Pfizer has already started working on a version of its Covid-19 vaccine specifically targeting the Omicron variant in case the current inoculation is not effective against the new strain, the US drugmaker's CEO Albert Bourla said Monday.

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'We are already working on vaccine against Covid's Omicron variant': Pfizer CEO
GNN Media: Representational Photo

Bourla told CNBC that his company on Friday began testing the current vaccine against the Omicron variant, which was first reported in South Africa and reignited fears of a global wave of Covid-19 infections.

"I don't think the result will be the vaccines don't protect," Bourla said.

But the testing could show that existing shots "protect less," which means "that we need to create a new vaccine," Bourla said.

"Friday we made our first DNA template, which is the first possible inflection of the development process of a new vaccine," he said.

Bourla likened the situation to the scenario earlier this year when Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech developed a vaccine in 95 days when there were concerns the previous formula would not work against Delta, though that version ultimately was not used.

The current vaccine is "very effective" against Delta, the executive said, adding that the companies expect to be able to produce four billion vaccine doses in 2022.

On Monday, the World Health Organization warned the new Covid-19 Omicron variant poses a "very high" risk globally.

Bourla said he was also "very confident" that Pfizer's recently unveiled antiviral pill would work as a treatment for infections caused by the mutations, including Omicron.

Among newly-infected, high risk patients treated within three days of the onset of symptoms, Pfizer's pill has been shown to cut hospitalization or death by nearly 90 percent.

SOURCE: AFP/CNBC

 

Faisal Ali Ghumman

Mr. Ghumman is a seasoned journalist who has 19 years of diversified experience in print, electronic and digital media. He has worked with 92 News HD, Daily Pakistan Today, Daily The Business, Daily Dawn, Daily Times and Pakistan Observer as News Reporter, Feature Writer, Editor, Web Content Editor and Article Writer. Mr Ghumman has graduated from the Bahauddin Zakariya University Multan and is currently enrolled in M.Phil in Mass Communication at the University of Punjab.

Pakistan

PM's use of religion as 'cover-up' for economic, governance breakdown a matter of concern: Shehbaz

The PML-N leader's criticism came hours after an article written by the premier titled 'Spirit of Riyasat-i-Madina: Transforming Pakistan'

Published by Faisal Ali Ghumman

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PM's use of religion as 'cover-up' for economic, governance breakdown a matter of concern: Shehbaz

PML-N president and Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif Monday said he was "really concerned" with the way Prime Minister Imran Khan was "using religion as a cover-up for the massive governance and economic breakdown" in the country, which he attributed to the latter's policies.

"Such a self-serving approach will wreak greater damage upon the polity than is being understood," he said on Twitter.

Shehbaz's criticism came hours after an article penned by the premier titled 'Spirit of Riyasat-i-Madina: Transforming Pakistan' was published in which he talked about the five basic tenets of Islam and how, in order for the country to realise its potential, society will have to struggle to embody these principles as a nation.

 

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Technology

Twitter expands feature that allows users to flag misleading content

The feature was first tested in the United States, Australia and South Korea

Published by Faisal Ali Ghumman

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Twitter expands feature that allows users to flag misleading  content

Twitter said on Monday it will expand its test feature which allows users to flag misleading content on its social media platform to Brazil, Spain and the Philippines.

The company had introduced the pilot test of the feature in August last year, as a part of its effort to reduce misinformation on its platform.

It was first tested in the United States, Australia and South Korea.

Since it was first announced, Twitter said it has received around 3 million reports from users who have used it to flag tweets which they believe are in violation of its policies.

The social media giant last year launched another program called Birdwatch, which lets participants write notes and provide additional context to misleading tweets, though those notes are held on a separate website.

SOURCE: REUTERS

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Pakistan

No substitute for selfless leadership of Imran Khan: Usman Buzdar

Pakistan has got truthful and honest leader

Published by Siddra Sumreen

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No substitute for selfless leadership of Imran Khan: Usman Buzdar

Lahore: Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar on Monday has said that lamp of negative politics of opposition has gone out, there is no substitute for the selfless leadership of Imran Khan.

In a statement, Usman Buzdar has said that opposition leaders have become restless due to from power. “In Shaa Allah this restlessness will continue even after 2023. They do criticism just for the sake of criticism for improving their political impression,” he added.

He said that the people who polluted politics with corruption their place is jail. The chief minister said that there is not any substitute of selfless leadership of Prime Minister Imran Khan. Pakistan has got truthful and honest leader. We performed those tasks in 42 months which previous governments could not perform in years.

"Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has done great work in three and a half years which the previous governments could not do in decades", Usman Buzdar concluded.

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