science

Scientists fear emergence of vaccine-evading Covid mutations within next year


New coronavirus mutations could emerge within the next year that significantly reduce the effectiveness of the current Covid-19 vaccines, scientists from across the world are warning.

The failure to provide even and equitable access to the vaccines is heightening this risk by allowing the virus to continue spreading freely among some of the globe’s poorest and most vulnerable populations, the experts say.

In a survey of 77 scientists from 28 countries, carried out by the People’s Vaccine Alliance, two-thirds said they believed the world had a year or less before Sars-Cov-2 mutated so that most first-generation vaccines were rendered ineffective and modified jabs were required.

Almost a third of those surveyed gave a timeframe of nine months or less.

The overwhelming majority (88 per cent) said that persistent low vaccine coverage in many countries would make it more likely for vaccine-resistant mutations to appear.

Fewer than one in eight said they believed that mutations would never render the current vaccines ineffective.



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