Researchers have discovered a new coronavirus strain that might be more infectious than the variants that were flowing at the inception of the pandemic. Researchers at the Los Alamos National have published the report that notes the vast and rapid spread of COVID-19 makes the virus to mutate advantageously for itself.
One specific mutation, dubbed Spike D614G, is concerning, according to researchers. It started flowing in Europe at the beginning of February and swiftly turned into one of the most dominant forms of the virus. And the mutation seems to be replacing the initial Wuhan type of the virus. What should we believe? Also, how can researchers contain such a thing?
A Mutation Produced a New Coronavirus Strain, and Things Can Be Concerning
The researchers stated that although they don’t know for sure what is making the “selective sweep,” the fast flow would be consistent with “enhanced infectivity.” Their report states that virus mutations seem to offer “an early warning system” for mutations that could be able to spread more quickly or avoid vaccines.
Spike D614G is of significant concern. It started spreading in Europe in early February, and when it reached new places, it quickly becomes the dominant type, according to the report. The researchers also present a piece of evidence of reblending between regionally spreading strains, indicative of many strain infections. “These findings have important implications for SARS-CoV-2 transmission, pathogenesis, and immune interventions,” detailed the researchers.
Note that, the report was published before being peer-examined to bring faster the collaboration with other researchers. But such a decision has led to some worries among some people. Bill Hanage, for example, is an associate professor at the Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health, stated: “the claims are suspect, to say the least.” On the other hand, Harnage didn’t dismiss the idea that the virus has been mutating, producing a new coronavirus strain.