(CNN) - A new study of two of the earliest coronavirus variants shows evidence the arrival of a new variant may not necessarily drive the increased spread of coronavirus.
Sometimes, researchers found, human behavior and government restrictions play a bigger role.
University of Washington researchers looked at thousands of virus samples from between February and July 2020.
For one variant, many experts assumed because it's more transmissible, the variant was driving the greater spread of coronavirus.
But the researchers found the variant spread faster in counties where officials were slower to order lockdowns and other measures.
The bottom line: the researchers say people's behavior has been more important than the variant in shaping the course of the pandemic in the state.