• Wednesday, Apr 21, 2021
  • Last Update : 12:48 am

Researchers: New coronavirus variant identified in New York

  • Published at 10:12 am February 25th, 2021
Small toy figures are seen in front of the coronavirus (Covid-19)
File photo: Small toy figures are seen in front of the coronavirus (Covid-19) sign in this illustration taken March 12, 2020 Reuters

Studies have shown that recently launched coronavirus vaccines are still likely to neutralize the virus and protect against severe illness

A new coronavirus variant that shares some similarities with a more transmissible and intractable variant discovered in South Africa is on the rise in New York City, researchers said on Wednesday.

The new variant, known as B.1.526, was first identified in samples collected in New York in November, and by mid-February represented about 12% of cases, researchers at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons, said on Wednesday.

The variant was also described in research published online this week by the California Institute of Technology. Neither study has been reviewed by outside experts.

The Columbia researchers said an analysis of publicly available databases did not show a high prevalence of coronavirus variants recently identified in South Africa and Brazil in case samples from New York City and surrounding areas.

“Instead we found high numbers of this home-grown lineage,” Dr Anne-Catrin Uhlemann, assistant professor in the division of infectious diseases at Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons, said in a statement.

The Columbia study found that B.1.526 shares some worrying characteristics with B.1.351, the variant first identified in South Africa, and P.1., which was first identified in Brazil. Several studies have suggested that those new variants are more resistant to some existing vaccines than earlier versions of the coronavirus.

The researchers said the main concern is a change in one area of the virus’ spike protein, called E484K, that is present in all three variants. The E484K mutation is believed to weaken the body’s immune response to the virus.

Studies have shown that recently launched coronavirus vaccines are still likely to neutralize the virus and protect against severe illness, even for infections with new variants. Vaccine makers are also working to develop booster shots to combat mutated versions of the virus.

53
Facebook 52
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail