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A researcher in the lab that developed part of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine

James MacDonald/Bloomberg via Getty Images

IT IS looking likely that covid-19 vaccines will have to be updated in the coming months to remain effective against new variants of the coronavirus. Several vaccine manufacturers have confirmed that they are already working on new versions of their vaccines to make sure they remain effective. But what does updating the vaccines involve and how long will it take?

At least two vaccines are less effective against the B.1.351 variant of coronavirus that was first identified in South Africa.

Interim results from …