The variant identified in South Africa has not yet proven to be more lethal than others, including the highly transmissible variants that were recently discovered in Britain and Brazil, But mutations that make him 50 percent easier to grasp have allowed him to take control of what was already out of control community transmission in South Africa.
“From our cases [DNA-]More than 90 percent of the new variants are in South Africa, said Richard Lessels, principal investigator at KwaZulu-Natal Research and Innovation Sequencing Platform. Crisp, Which played a leading role in determining Corona Virus Variables in South Africa and elsewhere. “It is amazing and terrifying how quickly he will dominate, and he feels that we are in the early stages of watching this alternative, and the new ones, becoming more and more dominant around the world.”
Its rise has led to dozens of countries imposing bans on travelers who have recently visited South Africa, including United State. On Thursday, South Carolina officials announced Two cases discovered The variant from South Africa, the first in the United States. The cases were of people without a history of travel to South Africa, which officials said indicated that community spread of the species was already underway.
I followed this step closely Advertisement by the US vaccine producer Moderna says that the antibodies its vaccine produces were less effective in neutralizing them than previously dominant variants of the Coronavirus. The company said it is developing a new booster syringe and testing a three-dose regimen as ways to boost the vaccine’s effectiveness against the variant.
On Thursday, Pfizer and its research partner, BioNTech, released a yet-to-peer-reviewed study showing that their vaccine was only slightly less effective against the alternative from South Africa, although results were limited because they only looked at the effect of the vaccine on two of a total of 23 mutations. In the variable.
South African studies also have it Documenting scores Cases of people who were infected with previous strains of the Coronavirus with the new variant, indicating that those who were infected with mild cases or had few antibodies may be susceptible to infection again.
In South Africa, despite a return to stricter lockdowns and curfews, many hospitals are overcrowded, especially in the Eastern Cape, which has become the epicenter of the new species. The shocking statistics released this week by the South African Medical Research Council show that the number of excess deaths is increasing Almost straight In all nine of the country’s provinces.
“Ambulances and family members have said they will travel from hospital to hospital for up to six hours in search of a place to get some oxygen,” said Imtiaz Suleiman, founder of one of the largest charities in South Africa, Gift of the Givers, which has it. Assisted distribution of oxygen machines. “Doctors will tell you that people died in cars while waiting to enter the ward, or that they died in wounded before they were seen.”
Pumla Minanda, who runs a 260-bed hospital in the Eastern Cape’s capital, Bisho, said social media posts spread wrong information about ways to avoid hospitals where people were dying, preventing more people from coming when they first felt symptoms. But as patients close to death, families rush to the hospital to find that little can be done to save their relatives.
“They came too late and by that time their oxygen levels were very low, and I saw them go down and down, and there is nothing we can do,” she said in a phone interview. “People are very afraid because there are a lot of people who have died.”
SAMRC’s excess death figures indicate that more than 110,000 have likely died of covid-19 in South Africa since May, although Official toll Just above 41,000. More than 30,000 excess deaths were recorded in January alone.
If most of these excess deaths could be attributed to Covid-19, which most South African experts believe they can, then the number of deaths in the country would be the highest as a percentage of its population in the world.
SAMRC researcher Debbie Bradshaw said that although South Africa generally has a reputation for recording most deaths, deaths that occurred outside of hospitals often went undiagnosed and thus escaped official fees.
She said: “We believe that most of the confirmed deaths due to the Coronavirus are really only reported from hospitals, while there are many who leave hospitals before death or do not reach hospitals in the first place.”
Although it could potentially be the cause of tens of thousands of deaths, the South African variant has been ranked by researchers less than 700 times. The British variant, on the other hand, has been serialized nearly 30,000 times. Roughly 80 percent of the South African sequences are found in South Africa and another 10 percent in Britain.
Another 30 countries make up the rest, but KRISP’s Lisels said it was likely the alternative was spreading more widely, particularly in African countries with closer economic ties to South Africa but where sequencing capacity is limited or absent.
South Africa’s land border has been closed to non-essential travel, but a long list of exceptions means thousands of people still cross it every week. They also remained open during the December holiday, when many migrant workers returned to their home countries on vacation.
And some of those neighboring or neighboring countries in South Africa, such as Zimbabwe, Zambia, Mozambique and Malawi, have seen cases rise after months of relative calm.
Lessels said his lab had been expecting to release sequences of samples taken from neighboring Mozambique this week.
“We are engaging in a tremendous amount of collaborative science with partners around the world trying to understand why they are on the rise,” he said.
The consensus, he said, is that it is no coincidence that new variants have emerged in South Africa, Britain and Brazil, which have suffered from some of the largest initial waves of the virus in the world. It was possible that in places where the virus was encountering large numbers of people who already had antibodies, the virus mutated to find new hosts more easily.
“Our failure to crack down on the spread of society, wherever it is, will definitely lead to more new variables,” said Lessels.