A study suggests that the new COVID-19 mutation appears to be more contagious-experts say this may be a response to the virus’s defeat of masks and other efforts to stay away from society.
According to the “Washington Post” report, scientists discovered a new strain of the virus in a paper published on Wednesday, accounting for 99.9% of the second wave of outbreaks in Houston, Texas.
The paper, which has not been peer-reviewed, says that the strain, called the D614G mutation, has a higher viral load, indicating that the virus is more infectious.
Although the virus is not more deadly, the researchers say that the virus seems more suitable for transmission in humans.
David Morens, a virologist at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said the findings indicate that the virus may become more contagious and “may affect our ability to control.”
He said the virus may evolve to resist efforts such as hand washing and social distancing.
Morens told the newspaper: “Wearing a mask and washing your hands, all these are barriers to transmission or infection, but as the virus becomes more infectious, it is statistically more able to bypass these barriers.”