Scientists warn of a new boom from Botswana – with a large number of modifications

For news leap Scientists say that the coronavirus, which has “too many” modifications, can cause further waves of the epidemic, as it is said to “pass” the body’s defenses.

According to the Guardian, the number of confirmed cases – only 10 – with genetic sequences may be small, however, the variant has caused serious concern to some researchers, because some modifications may help the virus evade immunity.

The B.1.1.529 variant contains 32 modifications of the protein spike, which is the part of the virus that most vaccines use to activate the Covid immune system. Mutations in the protein spike can affect the virus’s ability to infect and spread cells, but they also make it more difficult for immune cells to attack the pathogen.

The variant was first identified in Botswana, where three cases have now been identified, while another six cases have been reported in South Africa and one in Hong Kong of a traveler returning from South Africa. According to the Guardian, the first cases of the mutation were recorded in Botswana on November 11, and the first infection was in South Africa three days later. Regarding the case found in Hong Kong, this is a 36-year-old man who had a negative PCR test before traveling from Hong Kong to South Africa, where he stayed from October 22 to November 11. On his return to Hong Kong, he tested negative, but came back positive on November 13 while he was in quarantine.

Dr Tom Peacock, a virologist at Imperial College London, posted details of the new mutation on a genome-sharing website, noting that “the incredibly large number of alterations to height suggests this could be really worrying.” In a series of tweets, Peacock claims he “must be seen a lot because of this horrible Pin profile,” adding, however, It may turn out to be a “strange knot” that is not highly contagious. “I hope so” wrote.

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Dr Mira Chand, Covid-19 Incident Manager at the UK’s Health Insurance Agency, said that in collaboration with scientists around the world, the organization is constantly monitoring the status of Sars-CoV-2 mutations as they occur and evolve around the world. “Given the nature of viruses to mutate frequently and randomly, It is not uncommon for small numbers of cases to emerge with new combinations of mutations.. “Any variants that show evidence of prevalence are quickly evaluated.”

Scientists will be watching the new boom lest it gain momentum and begin to spread more widely. However, some South African virologists are concerned about the recent increase in cases in Gauteng, an urban area that includes Pretoria and Johannesburg, where B.1.1.529 cases have been identified.

Ravi Gupta, professor of clinical microbiology at the University of Cambridge, said the study in his lab found that two modifications to B.1.1.529 increased infection and decreased antibody recognition. “It certainly seems to be a major concern in light of the changes that are taking place. However, the main unknown virus characteristic is contagiousness, as this appears to have led mainly to the delta variant,” he said.

For his part, Professor Francois Ballou, Director of the UCL Institute of Genetics, argues that the large number of mutations in the mutation appear to have accumulated in a “single outbreak”, suggesting that it may have developed during a chronic infection in a person with a compromised immune system, And possibly an HIV/AIDS patient without treatment.

“I would certainly expect a few neutralizing antibodies to be recognized for alpha or delta,” he said, adding that “it’s hard to predict how infectious that might be at this point.” For now, it should be closely monitored and analyzed, but There is no reason to worry too much“Unless it starts to increase in frequency in the near future.”

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