Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, August 17) — The new dominant strain of coronavirus has been found by international researchers to be more infectious. It was recently detected in the Philippines, Filipino researchers have reported.
The new mutation of the SARS-CoV-2 virus called G614 has almost completely replaced the first version named D614, making it the most dominant coronavirus strain circulating worldwide.
The mutation affects the spike protein or the structure that the virus uses to get into the cells it infects.
Researchers at the Philippine Genome Center reported last week that the mutated strain of coronavirus was found in a small sample of positive cases taken from Quezon City.
When COVID-19 started spreading in the country last March, the D614G variant of the virus showed up in the samples collected by Filipino genome researchers.
However, when a new set of research was started in June, both the D614 and the G614 have been detected in a small sample of positive cases from the most populous city in the country.
“Although this information confirms the presence of G614 in the Philippines, we note that all the samples tested were from Quezon City. This may not represent the mutational landscape for the whole country,” it said in a bulletin released on August 13.
An international team of researchers in July found clear evidence that this new form of the coronavirus – G614 – is more infectious.
A global study published in the journal Cell said, “the new version seems to multiply faster in the upper respiratory tract, the nose, sinuses and throat. This would explain why it passes around more easily. But the bright side is that patients infected with the new strain of the coronavirus were not more severely affected, according to the study.
The University of the Philippines, backed the Genome Center highlighting the importance of studying and tracking the mutations of the virus. This has been done in order to create effective containment, diagnostic, and therapeutic strategies.
The Philippines has a total of 161,253 COVID-19 cases, with 112,586 recoveries and 2,665 deaths.
The country has the longest ongoing lockdown worldwide. The entire country’s population placed under varying degrees of stay-at-home restrictions for 156 days.
Article Courtesy by CNN Philippines Staff
Photo Courtesy of Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, August 17) — The new dominant strain of coronavirus — found by international researchers to be more infectious — was recently detected in the country, Filipino researchers have reported.