Scientists have now identified a new strain of the lethal Coronavirus which appears to be even more contagious than the original strain that has claimed the lives of hundreds of thousands across the world. As Yahoo News reports:
Scientists have identified a new strain of the coronavirus that has become dominant worldwide and appears to be more contagious than the versions that spread in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new study led by scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory.
The new strain appeared in February in Europe, migrated quickly to the East Coast of the United States and has been the dominant strain across the world since mid-March, the scientists wrote.
In addition to spreading faster, it may make people vulnerable to a second infection after a first bout with the disease, the report warned.
The 33-page report was posted Thursday on BioRxiv, a website that researchers use to share their work before it is peer-reviewed, an effort to speed up collaborations with scientists working on COVID-19 vaccines or treatments. That research has been largely based on the genetic sequence of earlier strains and might not be effective against the new one.
The rise of a mutated strain of Coronavirus for which a vaccine is unable to be synthesized for has been the true nightmare scenario for many scientists attempting to find a cure for the virus.