• Sun. Dec 5th, 2021

African covid variant, over 30 mutations on Spike

Byeditorial

Nov 26, 2021

The African covid variant was detected in just over 80 samples. And what is worrying is the presence of over 30 mutations in the Spike protein region alone, responsible for the entry of the coronavirus Sars-CoV-2 into human cells. What is known so far about the new variant labeled as B.1.1.529 and intercepted in South Africa is explained by experts from the African CDCs, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Yesterday, November 25, they explain in a statement, “the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) in South Africa announced the detection of a new variant of the Sars-CoV-2 virus, following genomic sequencing. Its emergence coincides. with a sudden increase in cases in Gauteng province in recent days and is therefore closely monitored by the South African health authorities. ” Read also As of 25 November the variant was present in 77 samples collected between 12 and 20 November from the South African province of Gauteng, 4 samples instead come from Botswana and 1 sample in which the new variant is present was reported in Hong Kong. “The variant B.1.1.529 shows more mutations in the genome of the virus”, reiterate the experts of the African CDC. “Some have been detected in earlier variants, such as Alpha and Delta, and have been associated with increased transmissibility and immune evasion.” However, many of the other mutations identified, the Cdc point out, are not yet well characterized and have not been identified in other variants currently in circulation. Further investigations are therefore underway to determine the possible impact on the ability of the virus to transmit itself more efficiently, to affect the effectiveness of the vaccine and evade the immune response and the ability to cause more serious or milder diseases. Africans mention travel bans, discouraging them because “for the duration of this pandemic, it has been observed that their imposition has not produced a significant result. Rather, priority should be given to the implementation of social and public health measures” and “speed up vaccinations”.

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