LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The COVID-19 mutation that has led to additional lockdowns in the U.K. was found in the U.S. on Tuesday, Colorado's governor confirmed.
The new strain was found in a man in his 20s with no travel history.
Dr. Ben Klausing, an infectious disease specialist at Baptist Health Louisville, said it is common for viruses to mutate, but this mutation is causing more concern. The CDC has said the strain can spread more rapidly, but scientists say there is no evidence -- at this point -- that it causes more severe illness.
Now the question is, will the COVID-19 vaccines fight this new variant?
"The way that the vaccine works is it generates antibodies that attack the virus at several different spots," Klausing said. "So it's going to require several different mutations for the vaccine to become ineffective."
Dr. Jon Klein, vice dean for research at UofL School of Medicine, said we will learn a lot more in the coming weeks about COVID-19 and the vaccines as more data is collected.
"The drug companies seem pretty confident that the vaccines will be able to handle this new strain," Klein said.
Another question being asked is if vaccinated people can still spread the virus.
"There's some hope that it will not only keep us from getting sick, but it will keep us from acquiring the virus and passing it on to the people around us," Klein said.
People are also wondering if you contract the virus twice. Doctors said it is not common but has happened.
"Initially, it was thought the reinfections were milder, and the majority are very mild cases," Klein said. "But there have been people that had really aggressive second cases."
Since there are things they are still learning, health professionals are urging people to wear a mask and socially distance even after being vaccinated.
"We're probably heading into the toughest 8-12 weeks of the entire pandemic, and the vaccinations are going to help, but they won't do away with the fact that we really have to redouble our efforts," Klein said.
Copyright 2020 WDRB Media. All Rights Reserved.