The scientist who helped discover the Omicron variety warned of its potential: “This is probably the most mutated virus we have ever seen.”

Durban, South Africa – COVID researchers are dressed in protective clothing before heading to the Africa Health Research Institute’s high-security bio-hazard lab, where they are amplifying live omikron, the blood of people with full immunizations, as well as those Will also be tested against the blood that was earlier. Suffering from infection.

“This is probably the most mutated virus we’ve ever seen,” said expert seismologist Alex Siegel, who is leading a team of researchers who have identified a new strain for the first time.

Omecron variants have more than 50 mutations – with more than 30 in spike proteins – increasing the virus’s ability to infect the body.

“It’s more of a Frankenstein than anything else,” Siegel said. “It’s always something new. I mean, the virus keeps surprising us.”

Within 36 hours of discovering the new species, these scientists alerted the world. Some countries, including America, now Travel ban From several South African countries in an effort to stem the tide.

Siegel’s team is working with other scientists to determine if this type is more transmissible or avoids exceptions. The lab has received numerous requests for Omecron samples, which are being packaged and sent to other research institutes across the country.

Scientists will find out in about 10 days whether the existing vaccine can stop Omicron, but Sigal is confident that the existing vaccine will still protect against serious illness and hospitalization.

But Siegel warned that as long as Africa lags behind in vaccination, the virus will continue to change. Omecron has mainly affected young people in Africa, and doctors in South Africa say most of those affected have mild symptoms.

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