Cleveland Clinic physician talks about COVID-19 mutations

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Viruses mutate randomly all the time

by: Lindsey Watson

Posted on Jan 18, 2021 / 09:08 PM EST
Updated: Jan 18, 2021 / 10:19 PM EST

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – New COVID-19 strains hit the headlines and effects on countries around the world. The virus has mutated or has changed, but what exactly does that mean and should we be concerned?

Viruses mutate randomly all the time. Doctor Daniel Rhoads, a microbiologist at Cleveland Clinic, says that in the case of COVID-19, the virus mutated so that the new strain can now better attach to our cells.

Once someone is infected, the virus behaves as usual. The good news is that testing can identify these new strains.

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“These new variants can still be detected with our current detection methods, so it should be comforting that we can still detect these variants just as we could detect the original strains,” said Rhoads.

At this time, scientists say they have no data to show whether the mutations have any effect on the effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccine.