As the nation recovers from the delta-wave variant, questions revolve around future and new variants of the coronavirus and the efficacy of a vaccine against it.
As long as the coil virus that caused the COVID-19 pandemic has infected people, new variants will continue to emerge.
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However, this does not mean that the variants will occur with the same frequency or become more dangerous.
Last week, the UK’s Health Security Agency said a delta descendant named AY.4.2 had “expanded” and “increased in frequency” in England.
In a statement to Business Insider, the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) said Wednesday that the variant is still very rare, “much less than 0.05%” of all sequenced viruses, with fewer than 10 in the agency’s database.
“At this time…there is no evidence that the AY4.2 sub-strain affects the efficacy of our current vaccines or treatments,” the CDC said.
Andrew Reed, a virologist at Penn State University, told The Associated Press that the virus must adapt its host to spread more widely, and the CDC says the delta variant is twice as contagious as previous versions of the virus.
While the virus may mean more, there is no evolutionary reason for it to be more deadly.
“We have seen a rapid evolution phase of the virus,” said Dr. Adam Loring, an expert on viruses and infectious diseases at the university. “She reaps the outstanding fruit, but there is no infinite number of things she can do.” Michigan, for the Associated Press.
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Those who are seriously ill are less likely to socialize and spread the virus to others.
With more than half of the world’s population still not immune, the virus is likely to continue to infect, multiply and possibly mutate – creating new variants.
Nearly 190 million people, or about 57% of the total population, are fully vaccinated in the United States
Scientists are investigating whether new variants could better circumvent protecting people through vaccination and infection, making immune responses less effective.
When that happens, experts can promote vaccine formulations that are updated periodically, as in the case of annual flu shots.
Pfizer CEO Albert Borla said in June that if the need arises, his company can develop a new vaccine for COVID-19 within 100 days.
Noting Nature on Wednesday, vaccine manufacturers Pfizer/BioNTech, Moderna and AstraZeneca “have a suturing exercise” and are practicing with variants known in clinical trials.
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The publication said Moderna is recruiting hundreds of participants to test new RNA vaccines against beta and delta variants, a mixture of beta and the original strain, and a polyvalent beta-delta vaccine.
The Associated Press contributed to this report
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