Important things to know about the new strain of Covid-19 virus

A new strain(B.1.1.529) of the covid-19 virus that had been found recently in south africa had been more alarming than the old variants. The Scientists have informed the health departments about its seriousness since it has a high number of spike mutations, is more resistant to vaccines, and also its increased transmissibility. Below are the important things we need to know about it:
              The B1.1.529 variant has more than 50 mutations with 30 spike proteins alone. This spike protein makes easy access to the body cells. Scientists are also confirming whether it is more transmissible or not. The Receptor binding part of the variant has ten mutations compared to the delta variant. There are also various reports about the new variant origin. It may be evolved from chronic infection of a person who may be an untreated hiv patient says Francois Balloux, director of UCL Genetics Institute. This variant is first found in south africa and then in botswana where it infected fully vaccinated people. In south africa, over more than 100 cases are been linked with this virus.

 There are also two cases found in Hong Kong. Samples collected showed very high loads of viruses with PCR Ct values of 19. There are high chances of it being very airborne. Even though patients were kept in separate rooms, samples showed 25 positives out of 87 swab tests. It may be vaccine evasion with this variant.
Israel has also confirmed its first case of this new variant. In India, Ministry said that this variant had very health implications and many people from south africa, Hong Kong, and botswana was screened after relaxing the visa restrictions.
 This news of the new variant has also smashed the global markets with travel implied stocks being the worst hit in Asia. In the initial stages of this variant itself, WHO has called out for caution.

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