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Home / Health / Highly infectious coronavirus variants are spreading around the world-undetected for months-before its discovery

Highly infectious coronavirus variants are spreading around the world-undetected for months-before its discovery



Infectious disease detection

Highly contagious SARS-CoV-2 According to a new study by researchers at the University of Texas at Austin, by October 2020, the variant has spread unknowingly in the United States for several months. Coronavirus disease Modeling Alliance. Scientists first discovered this virus in the UK in early December, and it is believed that this virus is highly contagious and lethal.diary Emerging infectious diseasesAn early release version of the study has been published, and the evidence provides evidence that the coronavirus variant B117 (501Y) is spreading around the world, and scientists have discovered the variant for several months.

“In December, when we learned about the British variant, it had quietly spread across the world,” said Lauren Ancel Meyers, professor of integrated biology and head of the COVID-19 Modeling Association at the University of Texas at Austin. “We estimate that the B117 variant may arrive in the U.S. by October 2020 two months before we know it exists.”

SARS-CoV-2 variant

A new study by researchers from the COVID-19 Modeling Consortium at the University of Texas at Austin shows that by October 2020, the highly contagious SARS-CoV-2 variant has spread unknowingly in the United States for several months.Image credit: Jenna Luecke/University of Texas at Austin

By analyzing data from 15 countries, the researchers estimated the likelihood of British travelers introducing the variant into 15 countries between September 22, 2020 and December 7, 2020. They found that the virus variant will almost certainly reach all 15 countries in mid-November. In the United States, this variant may have appeared in mid-October.

“This study highlights the importance of laboratory surveillance,” Meyers said. “Quick and extensive sequencing of virus samples is essential for the early detection and tracking of new variants of interest.”

Together with the publication of the paper, members of the consortium have developed a new tool that policymakers anywhere in the United States can use to plan genetic sequencing to help detect the presence of variants. To help the United States expand national surveillance of variants, a new online calculator can indicate the number of virus samples that must be detected in order to detect new variants when they first appear. For example, if the goal is to detect a new variant when it causes 1 in every 1,000 new COVID-19 infections, about 3,000 SARS-CoV-2 positive samples need to be sequenced every week.

The arrival of the coronavirus variant B117

By analyzing data from 15 countries, the researchers estimated the chances of British travelers introducing variants into 15 countries between September 22, 2020 and December 7, 2020. They found that the coronavirus variant B117 (501Y) almost certainly reached all 15 countries. Until mid-November. In the United States, this variant may have appeared in mid-October.Image courtesy: University of Texas COVID-19 Modeling Alliance

Spencer Woody, a postdoctoral researcher at the UT COVID-19 Modeling Consortium, said: “Health officials are looking for better ways to manage the unpredictability of this virus and future variants.” “Our new calculator determines how many SARS-CoV must be tested. -2 Positive specimens are sequenced to ensure that new threats are identified from the start.”

He explained that the calculator has a second function. “It can also help laboratories figure out how quickly they will detect new mutations given their current sequencing capabilities.”

Meyers said: “We created this tool to support federal, state and local health officials in establishing a reliable early warning system for this and future pandemic threats.”

For more detailed information about the calculator, click here.

Reference: Du Zhanwei1, Lin Wang1, Yang Bingyi, Sheikh Taslim Ali, Zeng Tian K, Zeng Songweishan, Wu Peng, Liu Jiawei, Benjamin Cowling (J. Cowling) and Lauren Ansel Myers ( Lauren Ancel Meyers), March 24, 2021, Emerging infectious diseases.
DOI: 10.3201/eid2705.210050

In addition to Meyers, the authors of the “Emerging Infectious Diseases” paper include Du Zhanwei, Yang Bingyi, Sheikh Taslim Ali, Zeng Ti Zeng, Shan Songwei, Wu Peng, and Emily Liu of the World Health Organization Infectious Diseases Collaboration Center And Benjamin Colin. Epidemiology and Control in Hong Kong and Wang Lin from Cambridge University.

The research was funded by the Hong Kong Health Research Foundation, the National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Meyers holds the Centennial Professorship of Denton A. Cooley at the University of Texas at Austin.




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