Infectious Disease Doctor Anthony Fauci.
JIM LO SCALZO / EFE
The chief epidemiologist of the U.S. government in the fight against coronavirus, he Dr. Anthony Fauci, warned of “more sinister” strains of the virus detected in South Africa and Brazilapart from the mutation registered in UK.
The director of National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIH) He said that together with his team they are looking very carefully at the two variations in addition to the one already detected in the European country.
“People have to be aware that there is more than one mutant strain,” Fauci said Sunday in an interview with NBC’s Meet the Press.
“There is one in the United Kingdom that is essentially dominant… There is another one in South Africa and Brazil“Added the expert while adding that the British strain is more infectious.
The doctor pointed out, however, that this should not trigger panic in Americans.
“They say it is more virulent. But, you know, we have to be careful, because the more cases you have, although on a one-to-one basis, it is not more virulent, which means that it will not make you feel sicker or have a better chance of dying; just by numbers nothing else, the more cases you have, the more hospitalizations there will be, “said Fauci.
The epidemiologist added that at the moment, they are examining whether the mutations would be resistant to vaccines available on the market.
“What we really want to look at carefully is whether the mutation reduces the impact of the vaccine,” said the doctor. “And if so, we will have to make some modifications … We are looking at that very carefully,” he insisted.
Fauci did not mention the supposed variants of the virus in Denmark and Germany in their statements.
British strain already in the US
In states like Michigan, cases of the British strain, known as B.1.1.7, have already been detected.
“Apparently it’s 50% more transmissible, or capable of spreading 50% faster,” said Dr. Adam Lauring, associate professor of infectious diseases at the University of Michigan.
“One way to think about it is if a person generally infects two on average with coronavirus, with the B.1.1.7 variant, that person could infect three more on average. And so, expanded, it can lead to a faster growth of the virus, “said the microbiologist as quoted by the Detroit Free Press on Monday.