Scientists in South Africa are still working “calmly and methodically” to fully understand the new variant, known as 501Y.V2. Data on the South African variant, which has swept across a swath of the country, has already been compared by scientists to the UK variant detected last week. “Putting our data together with that in the UK, this [South African] variant is a bit more effective at spreading from person to person and that is not good. It means we have to get a bit better at stopping it,” said Dr Richard Lessells, one of the specialists leading research into the new variant in South Africa.
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