An Evolutionary Biologist Looks at Variants, and the Role of Rapid Testing in Covid

This week, we cover two crucial issues in Covid: variants and testing. The highly infectious Delta variant has been responsible for changing the trajectory of Covid over the past six months. In the first segment, evolutionary biologist Paul Turner of Yale will describe how and why variants happen, whether Delta was a surprise, and what the future may hold in terms of additional variants. In the second segment, Harvard epidemiologist Michael Mina returns to Medical Grand Rounds. Mina is the nation’s most prominent advocate for focusing on testing as a key prevention and mitigation strategy. In the past few months, his calls have generated significant traction in the Biden administration. We’ll discuss the role of testing – particularly rapid testing – in creating safe spaces in businesses and schools, and where testing fits into our overall Covid strategy. The session is moderated by UCSF Department of Medicine Chair Bob Wachter.

Note: Closed captions will be available within 48-72 hours after posting.

Bob Wachter: Introduction
00:05:14-00:21:06 – How and Why Variants Happen, Delta, and Future Variants: Paul Turner (Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Yale University, and Microbiology faculty member at Yale School of Medicine)
00:21:06-00:33:01 – Q&A with Paul Turner
00:33:03-00:53:55 – The Role of Testing: Michael Mina (Assistant Professor of Epidemiology at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and Assistant Professor of Pathology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital)
00:53:55-01:07:09 – Q&A with Michael Mina
Bob Wachter: Closing

See previous Medical Grand Rounds:
• September 30: Restoring Words: Development of a Speech Neuroprosthesis for Communication
• September 23: Clinical & Policy Implications of Aducanumab
• September 16: Clinical Problem Solving
• September 9: The Fourth Surge, Vaccines, Boosters, Schools, and More https://youtu.be/cKJkC3MLcDg

See all UCSF Covid-19 grand rounds, which have been viewed over 3M times, here: https://medicine.ucsf.edu/covid-19-news-coverage
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