Is B.1.526 a threat? Experts believe that a new Covid-19 variation discovered in New York may compromise vaccine efficacy.
This discovery also underlines the necessity for a coordinated national monitoring effort to track and restrict the spread of novel coronavirus strains, according to the researchers.
A new strain of Covid-19 has been discovered in New York, as the US rushes to vaccinate as many people as possible against the virus. According to researchers, the variety, known as B.1.526, has a mutation that may reduce the efficiency of coronavirus vaccinations.
According to the Columbia University team, the detection rate of B.1.526 cases has steadily increased from late December to mid-February, with a spike of 12.3% in the last two weeks. One of the changes in this variety is the same genetic alteration identified in the variant known as B.1.351, which was first discovered in South Africa.
The scientists add, “It is this unique variety that has been increasing, alarmingly, in our patient group over the previous few weeks.” However, the findings were just released as a pre-print and have not yet been peer-reviewed.
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How harmful is the Covid-19 version from South Africa? The first two cases of the viral strain in the United States were discovered in South Carolina. Is the Covid-19 form of B.1.1.7 more dangerous? According to the findings, it may be linked to an increased risk of mortality. “In vitro experiments have demonstrated that one mutation, E484K, plays a critical role in the loss of neutralizing activity of several monoclonal antibodies as well as most convalescent and vaccination sera against variant B.1.35, according to the investigators… PCR assays were designed to identify viruses with two characteristic mutations, E484K and N501Y, to survey for these novel variations in our patient sample in New York City. Furthermore, whole genome sequencing revealed that the majority of our E484K isolates (49 out of 65) belonged to a single lineage: B.1.526.” “Phylogenetic analyses of sequences in the database further reveal that this B.1.526 variant is scattered throughout the Northeast of the United States, and its unique set of spike mutations may also pose an antigenic challenge for current interventions,” the findings state.
This discovery also underlines the necessity for a coordinated national monitoring effort to track and restrict the spread of novel coronavirus strains, according to the researchers. They warn, “In conclusion, we identified B.1.526 as a local lineage of concern due to E484K in particular, which could jeopardize the efficacy of current antibody treatments and vaccinations.”
Viruses are continually changing due to mutation, and new virus types are likely to emerge throughout time. Occasionally, new varieties appear and then vanish. New varieties emerge and persist at other periods. The virus that causes Covid-19 has been found to have many variations. Brinkwire News in a Nutshell