UK scientists believe it is 'almost certain' a coronavirus variant will emerge that beats current vaccines

UK scientists believe it is 'almost certain' a coronavirus variant will emerge that beats current vaccines

Posted: Aug 1, 2021 11:50 AM
Updated: Aug 1, 2021 11:50 AM

An analysis by British academics, published by the UK Government's official scientific advisory group, says that they believe it is "almost certain" that a SARS-Cov-2 variant will emerge that "leads to current vaccine failure." SARS-CoV-2 is the virus that causes Covid-19.

The analysis has not been peer-reviewed, the early research is theoretical, and does not provide any proof that such a variant is in circulation now. Documents like it are released "as pre-print publications that have provided the government with rapid evidence during an emergency."

The paper is dated July 26, and was published by the British government on Friday.

The scientists write that because eradication of the virus is "unlikely," they have "high confidence" that variants will continue to emerge. They say it is "almost certain" that there will be "a gradual or punctuated accumulation of antigenic variation that eventually leads to current vaccine failure."

They recommend that authorities continue to reduce virus transmission as much as possible to reduce the chance of a new, vaccine-resistant variant.

They also recommend that research focus on new vaccines that not only prevent hospital admission and disease, but also "induce high and durable levels of mucosal immunity."

The goal, they say, should be "to reduce infection of and transmission from vaccinated individuals," and to "reduce the possibility of variant selection in vaccinated individuals." Research is already underway at several companies that make the Covid-19 vaccines to address new variants.

The views were expressed in a paper "by group of academics on scenarios for the longer term evolution of SARS-CoV-2," and discussed and published by the UK's Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE).

They write that some variants that have emerged over the past few months "show a reduced susceptibility to vaccine-acquired immunity, though none appears to escape entirely."

But they caution that these variants emerged "before vaccination was widespread," and that "as vaccines become more widespread, the transmission advantage gained by a virus that can evade vaccine-acquired immunity will increase."

This is an issue that SAGE has warned about before.

In minutes from its July 7 meeting, SAGE scientists wrote that "the combination of high prevalence and high levels of vaccination creates the conditions in which an immune escape variant is most likely to emerge." It said at the time that "the likelihood of this happening is unknown, but such a variant would present a significant risk both in the UK and internationally."

The-CNN-Wire
™ & © 2021 Cable News Network, Inc., a WarnerMedia Company. All rights reserved.

Terre Haute
Clear
66° wxIcon
Hi: 68° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 66°
Robinson
Clear
65° wxIcon
Hi: 69° Lo: 45°
Feels Like: 65°
Indianapolis
Cloudy
61° wxIcon
Hi: 65° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 61°
Rockville
Partly Cloudy
65° wxIcon
Hi: 67° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 65°
Casey
Partly Cloudy
66° wxIcon
Hi: 68° Lo: 45°
Feels Like: 66°
Brazil
Partly Cloudy
66° wxIcon
Hi: 67° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 66°
Marshall
Partly Cloudy
66° wxIcon
Hi: 68° Lo: 46°
Feels Like: 66°
Sunny and dry, but cool and breezy!
WTHI Planner
WTHI Temps
WTHI Radar

WTHI Events

 

Illinois Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 7 p.m. CT)

Cases: 1605320

Reported Deaths: 27132
CountyCasesDeaths
Cook61354910964
DuPage1039171357
Will873121089
Lake771121060
Kane65888850
Winnebago39007544
Madison38143576
St. Clair35003569
McHenry33032316
Peoria25972362
Champaign25862182
Sangamon24588271
McLean21879207
Tazewell19736326
Rock Island17806344
Kankakee16784234
Kendall15459106
LaSalle14496275
Macon14478240
Vermilion13234189
Adams12695148
DeKalb11667128
Williamson11419157
Whiteside7897176
Jackson769188
Boone760082
Coles7341112
Ogle713486
Grundy701281
Franklin686899
Clinton681498
Knox6651164
Marion6547138
Macoupin646399
Henry620474
Jefferson6060132
Effingham604382
Livingston571295
Woodford554291
Stephenson546289
Randolph529297
Monroe508199
Christian491780
Fulton487970
Morgan487296
Logan477474
Montgomery467476
Lee458156
Bureau427188
Perry415171
Saline409263
Fayette398956
Iroquois394673
McDonough354956
Jersey322253
Shelby311843
Douglas306636
Crawford304130
Lawrence301131
Union296747
Wayne274057
White265930
Richland262054
Hancock256334
Pike255956
Cass250928
Clark250738
Bond244024
Clay240047
Ford235256
Edgar234744
Carroll225437
Warren224960
Johnson213524
Moultrie211831
Jo Daviess206126
Washington206127
Wabash200915
Greene200739
Mason199351
Massac198144
De Witt195530
Piatt190814
Mercer190634
Cumberland178325
Menard158612
Jasper152418
Marshall134721
Hamilton128821
Brown10178
Pulaski98311
Schuyler9688
Edwards96315
Stark76827
Gallatin7435
Scott6975
Alexander67611
Henderson65114
Calhoun6442
Hardin56013
Putnam5444
Pope4815
Unassigned1882432
Out of IL40

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 8 p.m. ET)

Cases: 941120

Reported Deaths: 15315
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1282511983
Lake633041097
Allen53609758
Hamilton43827447
St. Joseph41906590
Elkhart33545490
Vanderburgh30383448
Tippecanoe26820249
Johnson23609417
Hendricks22250341
Porter21737346
Clark17409229
Madison17366384
Vigo16108281
Monroe14466191
LaPorte14311239
Delaware14070221
Howard13865272
Kosciusko11418135
Hancock10841165
Warrick10674177
Bartholomew10542168
Floyd10430205
Wayne9959226
Grant9130204
Morgan8865160
Boone8389111
Dubois7710123
Dearborn762289
Henry7608130
Noble7413101
Marshall7362128
Cass7176117
Lawrence6957153
Shelby6584111
Jackson656785
Gibson6156107
Harrison603786
Huntington600195
Montgomery5805105
DeKalb574291
Knox5494104
Miami542488
Putnam536768
Clinton533665
Whitley524953
Steuben497268
Wabash483592
Jasper479160
Jefferson470092
Ripley454277
Adams444068
Daviess4169108
Scott405865
White391857
Clay390857
Greene388392
Decatur385296
Wells384983
Fayette374278
Posey359941
Jennings353156
Washington332047
LaGrange321375
Spencer317835
Fountain316555
Randolph312888
Sullivan307449
Owen283863
Starke280064
Fulton277553
Orange275859
Jay254837
Perry251652
Carroll243729
Franklin239338
Rush234130
Vermillion233250
Parke219820
Tipton209655
Pike207639
Blackford168334
Pulaski163551
Crawford146018
Newton144345
Benton142516
Brown135346
Martin128217
Switzerland125810
Warren114616
Union96911
Ohio79711
Unassigned0479