Vaccines likely effective against COVID-19 variants, study suggests

IVAN PEREIRA
·1 min read

A study released Tuesday by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases provided strong evidence that the coronavirus vaccines will stand up against the new variants.

MORE: What we know about COVID-19 vaccine effectiveness against variants

Researchers at the agency, which is led by Dr. Anthony Fauci, examined white blood cell samples from 30 people who had contracted and recovered from COVID-19 prior to the emergence of virus variants in locations such as the United Kingdom, South Africa and Brazil.

PHOTO: Sami Bates, 27, receives her COVID-19 vaccine as vaccine eligibility expands to anyone over the age of 16 at the Bradfield Community Center through Health Partners of Western Ohio in Lima, Ohio, March 29, 2021.  (Megan Jelinger/Reuters)
PHOTO: Sami Bates, 27, receives her COVID-19 vaccine as vaccine eligibility expands to anyone over the age of 16 at the Bradfield Community Center through Health Partners of Western Ohio in Lima, Ohio, March 29, 2021. (Megan Jelinger/Reuters)

Their studies found that the T cells, a key component in the body's immune system, remained active against the virus.

"While larger studies are needed, the researchers note that their findings suggest that the T cell response in convalescent individuals, and most likely in vaccines, are largely not affected by the mutations found in these three variants, and should offer protection against emerging variants," the NIAID said in a news release.

This data was originally released in February as a preprint before it was peer reviewed.

PHOTO: Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, testifies during a Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee hearing on the federal coronavirus response on Capitol Hill , March 18, 2021. (Susan Walsh/Pool via AP)
PHOTO: Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, testifies during a Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee hearing on the federal coronavirus response on Capitol Hill , March 18, 2021. (Susan Walsh/Pool via AP)

More studies will be conducted to collect additional data on the vaccines' strength against the variants and whether or not booster shots will be required.

ABC News' Sony Salzman contributed to this report.

Vaccines likely effective against COVID-19 variants, study suggests originally appeared on abcnews.go.com