The variant may have up to twice the number of mutations compared to the widespread Delta variant.
Britain announced on Thursday that it would temporarily ban flights to South Africa and five other African states because of a new coronavirus variant, news agencies Reuters and AFP report.
The flight ban will take effect on Friday at 12 noon British time. British tourists returning from the countries are quarantined.
According to British health authorities, the virus variant now found in Africa is the most worrying thing they have seen so far. The variant may have up to twice the number of mutations compared to the widespread Delta variant.
Health authorities according to the virus variant B.1.1.529, a peak protein has been observed that differs dramatically from the corresponding proteins of the original coronavirus.
Most coronavirus vaccines in use are protein based.
The variant has mutations that make it more likely to bypass the immune protection provided by a previous illness or vaccine.
The transformation may also be more sensitive. However, more research data is needed before it can be said for sure whether the modification actually reduces the effectiveness of the vaccine.
In addition to South Africa, conversion has been observed in at least Botswana and Hong Kong.
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