The new COVID strain in UK may be more 'deadly, escape immune system' -
The new COVID strain in UK may be more 'deadly, escape immune system'
Posted 25 Jan 2021 01:11 PM


The new COVID strain in UK may be more 'deadly, escape immune system'


The year 2020 was marked with one of the worst healthcare crisis the world has ever seen, the COVID-19 pandemic. While researchers and medical professionals worked at lightning speed to provide for vaccines to prevent the infection, and few of them were even ready and approved for use by the end of the year, the news of new mutations of the novel coronavirus came in. While experts said that current vaccines will be effective against the mutations that have been found as yet, the more contagious nature of the new COVID strains found in the UK, and South Africa respectively, worried people. As per research, the two strains are likely to be 50-70 per cent more contagious than the previous ones. However, as per recent reports, the new COVID strain found in the UK may not just be more contagious, but also more dangerous, and deadly.

Not only contagious, but UK COVID strain also more 'deadly' than previous ones
When the new COVID strain was discovered in the UK, it was found that the mutated strain of the novel coronavirus could be about 70 per cent more contagious, but does not increase the severity of the disease, or the risk of death due to the infection. However, the British government's chief scientific advisor has now said that there is some evidence that the mutated strain can cause a higher risk of death, as compared to the previous ones. Patrick Vallance told a news conference that �there is evidence that there is an increased risk for those who have the new variant�. He said the increased risk for a 60-year-old man appeared to be from about one death per 1,000 infections to about 1.3 or 1.4 per 1,000. But, Vallance stressed that �the evidence is not yet strong" and more research is needed. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson also said that early evidence suggested that the variant may be more deadly. Based on preliminary data briefing by scientists at the New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (NERVTAG), Johnson admitted that it would seem the new variant was deadlier. However, he said that the two vaccines being administered in the UK�Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID vaccines�are effective against all variants, that have been discovered so far, including the new COVID strain. Both pharma companies also clarified in their respective statements that their current vaccines are effective against the new COVID strain. As per Maria Van Kerkhove, the World Health Organisation�s technical lead on COVID-19, research is underway to determine the transmission and severity of the new COVID strains. She, however, reiterated that so far there has not been an increase in severity. She agreed that high transmissibility, however, can strain the healthcare systems around the world, causing more deaths due to the infection. Scientists are concerned that the new strains identified in Brazil, and South Africa can be resistant to the current vaccines, and more research is being conducted on the subject.

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