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Third dose of COVID-19 vaccine being tested to fend off variants. Plus, today's virus updates.
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Third dose of COVID-19 vaccine being tested to fend off variants. Plus, today's virus updates.

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Dozens of Americans are rolling up their sleeves for a third dose of COVID-19 vaccine — this time, shots tweaked to guard against a worrisome mutated version of the virus.

Make no mistake: The vaccines currently being rolled out across the U.S. offer strong protection. But new studies of experimental updates to the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines mark a critical first step toward an alternative if the virus eventually outsmarts today’s shots.

“We need to be ahead of the virus,” said Dr. Nadine Rouphael of Emory University, who is helping to lead a study of Moderna's tweaked candidate. “We know what it's like when we're behind.”

It's not clear if or when protection would wane enough to require an update but, "realistically we want to turn COVID into a sniffle,” she added. Read more:

Here's an update on all developments. Scroll or swipe further for in-depth coverage.

  • U.S. colleges hoping for a return to normalcy next fall are weighing how far they should go in urging students to get the COVID-19 vaccine, including whether they should — or legally can — require it.
  • A top Centers for Disease Control and Prevention official says surging vaccines to Michigan would not help the hard-hit state control the latest COVID-19 wave that has strained its hospitals and is raising concerns nationwide, because vaccines take two to six weeks to confer protection.
  • People across Britain flocked to shed shaggy locks and browse for clothes, books and other “non-essential” items as shops, gyms, hairdressers, restaurant patios and beer gardens reopened Monday after months of lockdown.
  • Uber is offering sign-up bonuses and other incentives for drivers as it faces record demand for rides and meal delivery.
  • China’s top disease control official, in a rare acknowledgement, said current vaccines offer low protection against the coronavirus and mixing them is among strategies being considered to boost their effectiveness.

For more summaries and full reports, please select from the articles below. Scroll further for the latest virus numbers.

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