One of Hong Kong's leading microbiologist warns of the risk the omicron variant poses to the global community

HKU's Dr. Kelvin To was part of a team that was revealed to have successfully isolated the omicron variant on Tuesday night and he said that:

"This particular strain has all the characteristics of previous mutations - and more. So I believe (existing vaccines) will not be as effective, but how much it will reduce efficacy is still hard to predict. Whether vaccines could be entirely ineffective, or reduce efficacy by 20 per cent or 40 per cent, is still too hard to say."

This fits with what vaccine makers have been saying recently, not least with the whole Moderna fiasco yesterday. But again, one must think that we have to go where the data tells us to go and so far, things aren't as bleak as what is being suggested.

That said, it can still take many weeks for this whole episode to sort itself out so we'll have to see how things go (still too early to draw any real conclusions). At least the market can take in some comfort that there is one person that isn't afraid of the omicron variant.