Scientists are concerned if the COVID-19 will be evolving into a more virulent form, improving and adapting in killing hosts without the antibodies to eject the virus.
One other concern is the global impact of the coronavirus that has affected millions of people. And now that words about coronavirus mutation is becoming rampant, many people are asking: just how informed are scientists to know when another strain is coming?
The good news is that most studies to the presence of an improved coronavirus should not be a matter of concern. From here on getting a vaccine will be the best insurance for everyone.
Is coronavirus evolving into a higher or lesser form?
The virus will evolve and mutate and the Sars-Cov-2 coronavirus that causes Covid-19 is doing it naturally. Mutations are random changes in the copying of the genetic code inside the cells, but many of these mutants are random and some do not last long with the virus reverting to its default form if the change is a failure.
One main difference of viruses is they have single strands of RNA, unlike humans with a double helix of DNA.
Are the COVID-19 strains changing fast?
The coronavirus stable in its current form, from an analyzed 13,000 samples of the COVID-19 gathered in Britain from the middle of March. Examination of the viral samples shows that there are two mutations a month. One indicator to watch out for is faster mutations that will change how the next generation of viruses will vary characteristics.
The fast-evolving virus may render vaccines useless because the virus has found a way to defeat the vaccine. Seasonal influenza does mutate fast and a different vaccine is made annually.
What are the different types of coronavirus all over the world
One of the indicators of the different strain of the coronavirus is the genetic code of each type as it deviates. This is normal for viruses to do. German researchers have identified three main strains of the virus in April. These identified types are A, B, C that were found in several groups. Groups A and C are mostly found in Europeans and Americans, while group B is most common in East Asia. Some minor strains exist, that can be traced to its sources and Wuhan or northern Italy.
Mutation is important to scientists
As said earlier, they matter depending on the effect of mutation, and worse is a mutation that can give the coronavirus the best chances to infect and bypass the immune system with ease. If that happens, all the prior work done on vaccines are doomed to fail, leaving all the work on natural immunity.
What changes are recognized by studies?
A few of them have been identified by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine which examined 5,000 genomes of the virus, the virus has adapted and here they are. One of these mutations is the spike proteins that inject into the host cell that initiates infection. This is yet to be examined so it can be used to redesign vaccines.
Prof Nick Loman at the University of Birmingham said," "We look to see if any of the mutations change behaviour and we don't have any evidence for that."
Virus do evolve and it is random,making it much harder for scientists to create a vaccine. As of now, we need more data to find out.