Omicron’s mutations visualized

Close up view of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein. Areas affected by Omicron mutations that evade antibodies are highlighted in red.

Close up view of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein. Areas affected by Omicron mutations that evade antibodies are highlighted in red.

Illustration summarizing effects of Omicron variants stabilizing mutations in the spike protein

Illustration summarizing effects of Omicron variants stabilizing mutations in the spike protein

Illustration summarizing SARS-CoV-2 omicron variants different entry pathways into the cell

Illustration summarizing SARS-CoV-2 omicron variants different entry pathways into the cell

These illustrations highlight the mutations of the SARS-CoV-2 omicron variant that allowed it to out-compete other variants in late 2021. They were created for Scientific American for the article Omicron’s Surprising Anatomy Explains Why It’s Wildly Contagious, February, 2022.