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Dirk Dittmer, PhD, explains how UNC-led CORVASEQ program helps to track the spread and development of variants like Omicron in North Carolina.

The Coronavirus Variant Sequencing (CORVASEQ) Surveillance Program, led by a team of UNC researchers, tracks the spread and development of variants like Omicron across the state. The first case of the Omicron COVID-19 variant in North Carolina was discovered by a member of the CORVASEQ program – a partnership between the NC Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Division of Health and the North Carolina Collaboratory. CORVASEQ has been up and running since the summer of 2021, and is led by UNC School of Medicine’s Dirk Dittmer, PhD, Amir Barzin, DO, and UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health’s Audrey Pettifor, PhD.

In this Q&A video, Dr. Dittmer explains more about the program and how it is vital to ensure effectiveness of tests, vaccines, and treatments throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and future emergencies.