Science

Colorado Health Officials Find Possible 2nd Case Of U.K. Coronavirus Variant

Colorado Health Officials Find Possible 2nd Case Of U.K. Coronavirus Variant”

"There is a lot we don't know about this new COVID-19 variant, but scientists in the United Kingdom are warning the world that it is significantly more contagious", Colorado Governor Jared Polis said in a statement. Although the development is cause for concern, some say it's not necessarily cause for alarm.

The leading USA infectious disease specialist, Dr. Anthony Fauci, said on Wednesday he foresees America achieving enough collective COVID-19 immunity through vaccinations to regain "some semblance of normality" by autumn 2021, despite early setbacks in the vaccine rollout.

Mutations in the coronavirus are not unanticipated, he said, considering that "the more you replicate, the more you mutate".

The "overwhelming majority of mutations are irrelevant", he continued, but "every once in a while, you get a mutation that does impact a function of the virus".

On a more worrisome note, Southern California's hospitals are already losing room for COVID-19 patients as ICU space in the region already dropped to 0%. Public health officials said they are working to identify other cases of the virus strain through contract tracing interviews. NY made the same decision, but a week earlier.

When England was grappling with this, some experts told The Times they did not think it would be a problem in terms of vaccinations. On Tuesday, a record 53,275 cases were reported, according to Johns Hopkins University.

"I am not alarmist about this", Casadevall said. "And if on the outside chance that [they aren't]. we can make changes to the vaccine". "And that is a very low probability event".

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Both the confirmed case and the suspected instance involve National Guard members who had been working at the Good Samaritan Society assisted living facility in Simla, about 45 miles northeast of Colorado Springs, health officials said. Travel history was not yet available for the second person there.

In response to the new variant, dozens of countries around the world have banned travel from the U.K. Late last week, the U.S. A total of 150,000 cases have be diagnosed in San Diego. "The fact that we were able to detect this as quickly as we did truly speaks to the incredible work of the exceptional scientists and staff in our lab", Governor Polis said.

The cases, found in individuals who had not recent traveled, showed the likely community spread of the variant from person-to-person in the United States.

"While it's been pointed out that there is not yet evidence that the strain has any more severe symptoms", Fletcher said, "there is significant evidence that it does spread considerably faster, that it is much more contagious".

The new variant adds additional pressure to speed up the ongoing vaccine rollout, of which 20 million first doses have already been allocated in the United States, Health and Human Services Sec. And nothing now suggests the approved vaccines will be less effective against the new variant, Stephen Goldstein, an evolutionary virologist at the University of Utah, tells Science News.

"This doesn't mean that the variant is not circulating in L.A. County", she cautioned during a briefing Wednesday. A sample of the B.1.1.7 variant results in only two of the genes - it lacks what's called the S gene.



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