Future COVID-19 variants could evade current vaccines: K Vijay Raghavan, PSA

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New Delhi: A phase-III of the COVID-19 pandemic is inevitable and we should be prepared for new waves. Previous infections and vaccines will cause adaptive pressure on the viruses for new kinds of changes so that it can escape. So we should be prepared scientifically to take care of that, said K VijayRaghavan, Principal Scientific Advisor to Centre.

Speaking at the daily press briefing of the health ministry he said that, the variants being transmitted currently are same as the original strain. It doesn’t have properties of new kinds of transmission like through air or water. It infects humans in a manner that makes it more transmissible as it gains entry, makes more copies & goes on, same as original.

But, SARS COVD-19 will be keep changing and in future there will be new variants which could be anti-body evasive or immune evasive. So we have to be prepared for that in terms of strategy and vaccine update etc. Scientists in India and across the world are trying to prepare a map in the laboratory of all possible changes in the variants and see how these variants can affect immune evasion and vaccine evasion.

Current vaccines are showing excellent efficacy on variants like B117, B617. But, as we go ahead we should have continuous surveillance on these variants and vaccine updates to take on new variants, he added.

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