“The more than 30 mutations of B.115.2.9, now known as Omicron, probably make this strain of Sars-

CoV-2 more contagious and may have an impact on the effectiveness of vaccines and previous disease to

prevent infection, but there is no indication yet that it is more dangerous than other variants,” reported City Press (28 November 2021).

According to Prof Tulio de Oliveira, director of the KwaZulu-Natal Research Innovation and Sequencing Platform (KRISP) the variant represents a big leap in the evolution of the virus.

Prof Willem Hanekom, head of the African Institute for Health Research and member of several Covid-

19-related advisory groups, said at the moment, scientists are making predictions based on what they know about mutations in other variants. More people can catch the virus again, but that does not necessarily mean they will become sicker, said Hanekom.

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