But the epicenter of infections is still in South Africa, in the Tshwane district northeast of Johannesburg, where cases appear to be doubling daily. According to South Africa's National Institute for Communicable Diseases, the positivity rate in the country is more than 26%.
That has given South African researchers a front row seat when it comes to researching, studying and tracking the variant — so what are they learning?
Here & Now's Scott Tong talks to South African infectious disease expert Salim Abdool Karim, co-chair of the South African Ministerial Advisory Committee on COVID-19.
This segment aired on December 7, 2021.