Sipho Mabena
Premium Journalist
3 minute read
29 Jan 2021
6:45 am

Will vaccines work against new variant?

Sipho Mabena

The Eastern Cape, Western Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng data suggests that the new variant’s lineage may be predominant throughout SA.

Picture: iStock

As South Africa gears up for the first phase of Covid-19 vaccination programme, scientists have been left scratching their heads on whether the vaccines will work against the new variant of Sars-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19, termed 501Y.V2. According to the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD), this new variant’s lineage has shown to predominate in the Eastern Cape, Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal, all of which experienced major Covid-19 outbreaks. Preliminary NICD analysis of 479 sequences from Gauteng, indicated that the new variant’s lineage first appeared in November and by December accounted for 84% (62/74) of sequences. The Eastern...