American researchers detected two variants of the coronavirus that could be more contagious and that behave in a similar way to the British, according to findings of a preliminary study published Wednesday.
One of the variants mutated in a similar way to the British, while the other is one not seen to date by researchers and that became dominant in the Ohio state capital, Columbus, in just a few weeks.
“The Columbus variant has the genetic basis of similar cases that we have studied, but it has three mutations that would mean a very important evolution,” said the professor of pathology at Ohio State University, Dan Jones, a participant in the study.
Jones warned that the new variant “increased the transmissibility (of the coronavirus) compared to parent variants” and he considered that restricting circulation is not going to be enough to prevent its spread.
Both variants have their origin in mutations within the United States and not imported. Photo: Bloomberg
The two variants have their origin in mutations within the United States and not imported from other countries since March, when they began to be sequenced, an effort that was accelerated when seeing the prevalence of the strains.
The research, which has not yet been reviewed by the scientific community, indicates that the coronavirus is undergoing a period of significant changes in its genetic makeup.
Although it is early to determine how contagious the new strains are, the virus has been in the population for several months and undergoes continuous changes.
The researchers also recalled that es premature to know if new variants do not respond to vaccines, which are being supplied to the population at risk since December in the United States and other European countries.
The White House task force suggested earlier this month that there could be a “American variant” judging by the extent of infections in recent months in the country.
According to official figures, the United States is adding between 200,000 and 300,000 daily infected with Covid-19 with more than 4,000 deaths per day.
For example, this Wednesday the United States reached an accumulated 23,047,409 cases and 384,277 deaths, at a time when the pandemic does not give truce. New York State continues to be the worst hit in the country by the pandemic with 40,192 deaths, followed by Texas (31,272), California (31,258), Florida (23,396) and New Jersey (20,161).
With information from EFE.