Recently UK has announced that it has got second mutated strain of COVID-19 The United Kingdom is also the first country to begin COVID inoculation using a vaccine. The World Health Organization which has criticized several times before in pandemic has said it found a “substantial increase in transmission of the virus but no evidence yet of increased severity” however it has not shown except on twitter that how they conclude this and what they have studied so far.
The news are all over but there is no genetic or proteomics study to show the claims. We have searched internet using various terms but could not find a single study that would suggest us about mutation or its analysis. However there is one study that has been published on a platform that does not suite the profiles of researchers; it is not published in any reputable journal. (https://virological.org/t/preliminary-genomic-characterisation-of-an-emergent-sars-cov-2-lineage-in-the-uk-defined-by-a-novel-set-of-spike-mutations/563)
This second strain has also raised questions over vaccine efficacy and safety because it was prepared for other strain and thus clinical trials will be needed to test on this strain. The claim of BBC that vaccines will work on this is highly controversial because existing vaccines target spike proteins and the new virus has been shown to have mutated spike proteins. Adding to it BBC has written that ”A presentation by Prof David Robertson, from the University of Glasgow on Friday, concluded: “The virus will probably be able to generate vaccine escape mutants.(https://www.bbc.com/news/health-55388846)
The news was also covered by Reuters, the topmost news agency but the article does not seem to have any investigative journalism like how Health Secretary Matt Hancock arrives at the figures and conclusion, when the lives of millions of people are on stake not just because of virus but because of lockdown impositions. (https://in.reuters.com/article/health-coronavirus-britain-variant/over-1000-cases-of-a-new-coronavirus-variant-found-in-england-minister-says-idINKBN28O245)
Read More in January 2021 issue of BIOTECH EXPRESS