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36. UK COVID Variant Explained

We break down what’s known about the new UK COVID variant: what it is, types of mutations, what’s meant by ‘more transmissible’, and potential effects on vaccine efficacy.


Listen on:



We discuss:


A new COVID variant in the UK is reported to be 71% more transmissible than ‘wild type’ virus [00:01:45];


The epidemiologic data on the new variant [00:03:09];


NERVTAG has ‘moderate confidence’ of increased transmissibility [00:04:56];


UK technical briefing shows no increase in 28 day mortality for new variant (at least so far) [00:06:02]


A South African variant shows similar behavior as UK virus [00:06:45];


Potential effects of new variant mutations on vaccine efficacy [00:09:00];

  • Another variant (though not becoming dominant) has shown ability to evade some antibodies.

  • So far, the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines appear effective against previous mutations.

  • It’s still unknown how the new mutation will impact vaccine efficacy.

And More.



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