The coronavirus pandemic continues to spread across the globe, with new strains being discovered that are more infectious than the original. Now, there is evidence that a new strand, which was discovered in the United Kingdom, could also be even deadlier. Here is what we know so far about these new strains.
What Are The New Strains?
There are thousands of coronavirus strains circulating around the world. Experts are highly concerned with a few, including a UK variant that has spread to over 50 countries, a South African variant that has reached around 20 countries, and a strain from Brazil.
We know that, as with all viruses, that the coronavirus will continue to mutate over time for survival. Some of these mutations can be inconsequential; however, many will also make the virus more infectious and deadlier.
How Dangerous Are They?
As of right now, there is no evidence to suggest that any of these new strains cause more serious illness for a majority of those infected. The risk with these strains, like previous ones, is with elderly folks and those with pre-existing health conditions.
According to some researchers, the new UK strain has a 30% higher risk of death. However, the evidence is weak and somewhat unreliable at this point.
All that we can do to keep ourselves safe is continue to take safety precautions and follow the guidelines set forth by scientists and government officials. Washing your hands, wearing a mask, and keeping a safe, social distance will help stop the spread of the virus. For facilities, ContagionCLEAN offers an organic biodegradable solution that is CDC approved, and capable of disinfecting any surface from harmful viruses and bacteria, including COVID-19.
What is Happening to the Virus?
The strains found in the UK, South Africa, and Brazil appear to be more contagious than past strains. According to the research we know, the key change appears to be in their spike protein, which helps it attach to human cells, making it easier to infect and spread.
Many researchers believe that the new strain in the UK first emerged in September, and is 70% more transmissible, though this data has been called into question. It is believed that the South African variant arose in October, and the Brazil strain in July. Both have undergone more intense changes to their proteins. It is believed that they could possibly interfere with the effectiveness of the vaccine.
What Role Does the Vaccine Play?
Experts believe that current vaccines, though designed around other stains, could work against new variants, but not as effectively. Early research suggests that the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines will protect against the new strains from the UK and South Africa, respectively. It is anticipated that the virus will continue to change over time, and scientists are prepared to tweak the vaccine to attack the mutations that come with these changes. Expect the COVID vaccine to be treated similarly to the flu vaccine.
The virus is being monitored by scientists, and it’s expected that variants will continue to rise. Vaccines will continue to be adjusted and rolled out as needed. One thing that is certain, though, is that when it comes to your facility, home or office, the only way to be clean is to be contagionCLEAN.