Since December of 2020, several new variants of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 have been identified. It is common for viruses to mutate over time, resulting in new variants between geographic regions, and the SARS-CoV-2 virus is no different.
Understandably, the emergence of these new strains has raised questions and concerns such as, “Are the new strains more deadly?” or “Will the vaccine still work?”.
Here is what we know about the new coronavirus variants, according to leading health experts.
- Johns Hopkins says there are some aspects of the B.1.1.7. strain out of England that may make the virus more contagious.
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have stated that a variant called P.1 out of Brazil may contain mutations that affect its ability to be recognized by antibodies.
- The CDC has also reported that, so far, studies show the current vaccines will produce antibodies that recognize the current variants.
As long as the coronavirus continues to spread, there will almost certainly be more new variants emerging. Right now, experts do not believe the new strains are more dangerous or deadly, although these variants may spread faster. It is vitally important at this time to take preventative measures to slow the spread of this virus.
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