Dr. Eric Topol expects Covid vaccines to protect against serious disease from omicron infection

Dr. Eric Topol told CNBC’s Jim Cramer on Tuesday that he believes existing Covid vaccines will provide adequate protection against cervical disease for people infected with the newly discovered omicron variant.

In an interview with “Mad Money”, the individualized medical expert also emphasized the importance of receiving a Covid booster shot, and pleaded with Americans to get the extra dose of the vaccine.

“There are many reasons for optimism that this is not a terrible situation we are in. Vaccines should stop serious illness, especially with people who are boosted,”[ads1]; said Topol, founder and director of the Scripps Research Translational Institute.

There is not yet a confirmed case in the US of the highly mutated coronavirus variant that was first discovered by health authorities in South Africa about a week ago. However, some health experts warn that it is only a matter of time before it happens given international travel patterns.

Given the number of spike protein mutations associated with the omicron variant, Topol said: “The main agenda here is, how much does it actually avoid our immune system?”

“We are so confident that when you get a third booster shot, you get really high levels of neutralizing antibodies and you get wider coverage of those antibodies,” Topol said.

“The other thing is T cells. T cells are what really protect us from serious disease, from Covid pneumonia,” he continued. Antibodies and T cells are both part of the immune system’s response to fighting infections.

“Our T cells are very insensitive, not affected by variants, to any significant degree,” said Topol. “If you just look at biology, you would be really optimistic,” he added.

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