The double mutation of a variant of Covid-19 discovered in India is of great concern – and could spread to other countries, according to Dr Kavita Patel, a non-resident researcher at the Brookings Institution.
“This is something to watch very closely, and something that will not be limited to India. It is something that we will probably see around the world as we have done with other variants.” , she told UKTN on Monday “Street Signs Asia”.
India’s health ministry said last week that a variant with two mutations – known as E484Q and L452R – had been found in the country. Mutations aren’t new, but the variant in India carries both – something that hasn’t been seen in other variants.
The mutations could make the virus more contagious and better evade the body’s defenses.
A health worker administers a dose of COVID-19 vaccine at a clinic in Bhopal, India, March 25, 2021.
STR | Xinhua News Agency | Getty Images
“This double mutation, number one, is incredibly serious. Number two, it’s probably just the tip of the iceberg in what would worry us in Asia,” said Patel, who is also a former administration official. Obama.
She said the mutations could lead to re-infections because the body’s immune system will not recognize it and therefore cannot fight it effectively.
Patel also said she would be concerned about the implications of the mutation if she was an Asian health official and thought about how to get as many people vaccinated as possible.
Authorities in India have said that the variants of Covid, including the double-mutated strain, have not been detected in numbers as large as sufficient to explain the spike in new infections.