Japan discovered another coronavirus mutation – here’s what we know so far


Chris Smith

  • Researchers from Japan have discovered a new coronavirus mutation that seemingly came to the country from Brazil.
  • The Brazilian strain features 12 different mutations, including one spotted on the UK and South African mutations that were revealed a few weeks ago.
  • It’s unclear how contagious this new strain is compared to other coronavirus strains circulating in Brazil, but the country is currently experiencing a new wave of COVID-19 infections.

The UK and South Africa announced two potentially dangerous coronavirus strains in the weeks leading up to Christmas. The mutations were confirmed just a few days apart, and the weeks that followed brought us more details about the two variants. The B.1.1.7 (UK) and B.1.351 (South Africa) strains each feature more than 10 distinct mutations, including mutations at the spike protein level. Scientists from Pfizer and BioNTech already tested their vaccine against that spike mutation and found it to be effective. The news came after weeks of speculation on whether or not vaccines would still work against the two new SARS-CoV-2 variants. Public health officials and experts in the field said vaccines should still work, though some worried that the South African strain might thwart antibodies.

Vaccines might work against the two strains, but the two versions are still more infectious than other variants, driving record case numbers in the UK and South Africa. Unfortunately, these aren’t the only new coronavirus mutations that are causing concern.

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Japan discovered another coronavirus mutation – here’s what we know so far originally appeared on BGR.com on Wed, 13 Jan 2021 at 13:52:10 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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