Search our database of publications on vaccines for COVID-19. These include published scientific papers, preprints and policy reports, and all are from teams based in the UK.
The Omicron sub-lineages BA.4 and BA.5, identified in South Africa in early 2022, were first detected in England in April 2022. A case surge followed despite England having recently experienced waves with BA.1 and BA.2. BA.4 and BA.5 have identical spike proteins most similar to that of BA.2 but with additional mutations including the 69–70 deletion, L452R, F486V and wild-type amino acid at position Q493.1 Neutralisation assays have found BA.4 and BA.5 display increased evasion of antibodies from plasma of vaccinated or BA.1 infected individuals, as compared to BA.2.3, Recent data from Denmark and Portugal have found that the odds of being vaccinated did not differ amongst BA.5 and BA.2 cases.6,7 The Portuguese study did find lower VE against hospitalisation for BA.5 using a cohort study design.