News reports abound about the fact that SARS-CoV-2, the virus behind the coronavirus pandemic, is mutating. A new viral lineage which exploded in the U.K. late last year, and more recently in many areas of the U.S., called B.1.1.7, has many concerned that this new version is behind skyrocketing transmission rates. In a recent summary in JAMA, Michigan Medicine’s Adam Lauring, M.D., Ph.D., Associate Professor of Infectious Disease in the departments of Internal Medicine and Microbiology and Immunology, and Emma Hodcroft, Ph.D., of the University of Bern, Switzerland, summarize what the new variants of SARS-CoV-2 might mean for COVID spread, immunity and the vaccination effort.

 

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