COVID: did a delayed second dose give the delta variant an evolutionary helping hand?

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Sumary of COVID: did a delayed second dose give the delta variant an evolutionary helping hand?:

  • Some experts warn that the delta variant may be 100% more transmissible than the previously dominant variant, alpha..
  • Successful variants often have a biological advantage – through mutation – that helps them spread more easily among the population..
  • And it the variants with these mutations that natural selection acts on, ensuring they out-compete other, less transmissible strains..
  • The delta variant may, however, have a more complicated relationship with people than those that came before it..
  • It is even possible that it was government policies, rather than the variant inherent increased transmissibility, that led to its success and dominance in the UK..
  • The first, natural selection, occurs when one type of organism out-competes another — either within or between species — leading, over time, to the success of one and the demise of the other..
  • A third, less well–known force called unconscious selection, is where human interactions with the environment have accidental evolutionary effects..
  • This further subset of natural selection is an important force across the world and is becoming increasingly important as populations grow and people change the global environment….

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