Rochelle Walensky, the CDC director, said that the coronavirus that has been troubling humanity over the past (nearly) two years is only “a few mutations potentially away” from evolving into a strain immune to the existing vaccines.
The concept was analyzed in a recently posted study made public in the journal Scientific Reports.
Analysis suggested that the most efficient way to end the coronavirus killing spree is mass vaccination.
The researchers concluded that there is a slight chance that a vaccine-resistant strain may appear in the following scenario consisting of three main steps:
- A significant part of the population is vaccinated, but not everybody from that group.
- There is a significant quantity of viruses circulating in the same area as the population.
- Nobody is keeping the spread of the virus among unvaccinated people under control.
The three steps are awfully relatable to what is currently happening in most countries.
The Delta variant is slowly but steadily making its way across the globe. It is currently the most prevalent strain of coronavirus in the US, accounting for over 80% of the country’s cases.
However, that percentage wasn’t particularly alarming because research suggested that vaccinated individuals were unlikely to spread other variations of the virus.
However, the CDC studied the subject and determined that vaccinated citizens can spread the virus just as quickly as unvaccinated ones, which spells out bad news for everybody.
Scientists are working on mathematical models to determine which conditions can lead to the highest risk of spawning new virus variants that can eventually become immune to vaccines.
They discovered that, if part of a population is vaccinated, but a significant part of that same population remains unvaccinated, a strain that can evade or at least survive vaccine-provoked immune reactions has a significant advantage over other strains, which would set us back two years in terms of progress, because everybody would be at risk again.