WHO reacts to “new strain” of coronavirus in Britain

WHO reacts to "new strain" of coronavirus in Britain

A mutated virus has been detected in London and the southeast of England.
A mutated version of the COVID-19 coronavirus is spreading in the United Kingdom along with the “traditional” coronavirus. It has been detected in London and the southeast of England.

According to British Health Minister Matt Hancock, more than a thousand cases of the “new variant” of COVID have been detected in some areas of the counties of Essex, Kent and Hertfordshire.

The World Health Organization (WHO) commented that the new variant of the virus is spreading faster but is not more dangerous.

“It’s more contagious, but it doesn’t seem dangerous. The data suggest that this will not radically change priorities in the fight against the virus in the United Kingdom,” David Navarro, WHO special envoy for COVID-19, told Sky News.

The symptomatology of the “new” virus does not differ from that of the “traditional” variant, and there is no evidence that the mutation makes it resistant to the anticoronavirus vaccine.

British scientists are studying the “new strain” of the virus – London has notified the WHO of its emergence, and the World Health Organization is urging Britons to remain vigilant, because the “conventional” covid pandemic has not gone anywhere.

Virus mutations are a natural and constant process. Every virus mutates because it creates new copies of itself on contact with its host to infect other cells.

Sometimes mutations make a virus more dangerous, cause serious complications and allow it to develop “immunity” to drugs and vaccines. But in some cases, mutations can also weaken the virus.

“The genetic information in many viruses can change very rapidly. Sometimes these changes can benefit the virus, allowing it to transmit more efficiently or develop resistance to vaccines or treatments, but many of them are useless,” stressed Jonathan Ball, professor of molecular virology at the University of Nottingham.

This is not the first mutation of the coronavirus since the pandemic began: “new strains” have appeared in China and Spain, for example. So scientists urge us not to panic. They continue to monitor the “British strain” to see if the virus has changed its behavior after the mutation.