Coronavirus usually mutates at a slow but steady rate about twice a month, compared to 23 in the UK
new York- The version of the coronavirus that appeared in the UK at the end of last year was shocking for many reasons. Just as the vaccine gave people a glimpse of the end of a pandemic, it happened, threatening to destroy those hopes.
It is more infectious than the first variant, leading to a rapid increase in hospitalization. Perhaps what surprised scientists the most was that he had acquired a large number of mutations that appeared all night.
Coronaviruses usually mutate at a slow but steady rate of about two per month. However, this variant called B.1.1.7 already has 23 mutations, which are not among the first viruses discovered in China. Seventeen of them developed at the same time, sometimes after the fork of their most recent ancestors.
Experts say this is a good hypothesis: at some point, the virus may infect a person with a weakened immune system, allowing it to adapt and evolve in the human body for several months before spreading to others.
Dr. Ravindra Grupta, a virologist at the University of Cambridge, said: “This seems to be the most likely explanation.”
If so, then this idea will have an impact on vaccination schedules, especially in countries that have not yet begun to immunize their populations. Dr. Adam Lauring, a virologist and infectious disease expert at the University of Michigan, said that people with compromised immune systems (such as cancer patients) should be vaccinated first.
The faster the population is protected, the less risk the corpse becomes an incubator for the next generation of mutants in the world.