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U.S. is in a ‘Race Against Time’ with New Coronavirus Variants, Scientists Warn

todayJanuary 31, 2021 3

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Scientists warn of rapidly spreading mutations of COVID-19 that may prompt a spike in cases across the U.S.

What We Know:

  • So far, there have been three confirmed variants of COVID-19 and one potential variant strain from California. The three mutated strains are believed to have originated in the U.K., Brazil, and South Africa. According to the CDC website, “these variants seem to spread more easily and quickly than other variants, which may lead to more cases of COVID-19. An increase in the number of cases will put more strain on health care resources, lead to more hospitalizations, and potentially more deaths.”
  • As uncertainty weighs in, scientists urge that people be vaccinated as quickly as possible to keep the virus from undoing months of progress made by statewide shutdowns. NBC reports that the current vaccines are effective against the U.K. variant that was first reported back in November. The South African variant, however, has shown a drop in the level of antibodies produced by the Moderna vaccine. Although the antibodies remained above protective levels, the company has decided to start boosting its existing vaccine to make it more effective against emerging strains.
  • Vaccination efforts in the U.S. have yet to reach the majority of the public and have been faced with a number of rollout issues. The FDA approved vaccines, Pfizer and Moderna, have been stalled by delivery issues, insufficient supply, and unauthorized distribution. According to a CNN analysis report, medical racism is also playing a part for people of color who are hesitant to be vaccinated.
  • Adam Lauring, a virologist at the University of Michigan told Scientific America that, “the sheer number of COVID cases worldwide is allowing the virus numerous opportunities to change a little bit. Each infected person is, essentially, a chance for SARS-CoV-2 to reinvent itself. Some of it is evolution, but a lot of it is epidemiology. Overall, the virus is getting better at being a virus.”

With more variants to be expected, people are highly encouraged to maintain social distancing rules and continue using masks while out in public.

The post U.S. is in a ‘Race Against Time’ with New Coronavirus Variants, Scientists Warn appeared first on Black News Alerts.

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