The successful adaptation of the corona virus in the form of a mutation is far more infectious than the original version from Wuhan.
A new mutation in the coronavirus affects human cells more easily than the original one. A study now confirms that the currently prevailing variant is far more infectious than the prototype from China. And that, although not much has changed in its structure.
The study was published in the Cell. Researchers from three universities, the Los Alamos National Laboratory, Duke University and Sheffield University, found in April that the mutant virus infected more and more cells with a single change in a protein, making it slightly adaptable.
“The new variant is now the pandemic”
After the researchers were asked to specify the data, they analyzed the data from 999 corona patients from England. Laboratory tests showed that the ability to infect cells was three to six times higher. The optimized virus had prevailed. “It looks like it is a more powerful virus,” says Erica Ollmann Saphire of the La Jolla Institute for Immunology.
The question remains whether the course of the disease is more severe or “only” the viral load in the cells. In a commentary on the study, virologist Nathan Grubaugh of the Yale School of Public Health wrote: “The new variant is now the pandemic”.