So the critical question is not are variants being produced. Of course they’re going to be produced. The critical question is do these variants make the virus more contagious, more virulent, and most importantly, far and away most importantly, have these variants evaded recognition by vaccine-induced immune response - Paul Offit


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4 reasons we’re seeing these worrying coronavirus variants now

Covid-19 is evolving. Why now?

Since the start of the pandemic, SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19, has been mutating, its genetic code slowly changing as it spreads from person to person across the globe. For most of that time, the mutations didn’t concern scientists. The genetic changes didn’t seem meaningful in terms of how dangerous the virus is. Mutations are normal. Some even weaken the virus.

Now, things are different.

There are three mutated variants of SARS-CoV-2 of particular concern around the world. Researchers do not have the same level of evidence for each: One is more well understood than the others. But in each case, researchers see a seed of…

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Last Updated : Sunday, July 18, 2021