A mutation of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19 recently detected in Malaysia is more infectious, but also less deadly
A serosurvey conducted in areas that reported a large number of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases in Maharashtra’s Pune showed 51.5 per cent of the samples tested had antibodies against the virus. This was the greatest seroprevalence reported than any other city, reported news daily The New Indian Express.
- The seroprevalence was the greatest at Lohiya Nagar-Kasewadi area (65.4 per cent) and lowest in Kasbapeth-Somwarpeth (36.1 per cent), two of the five wards where the survey was conducted.
- The survey pointed out the highest seroprevalence was found among those living in hutments (62 per cent), while those who lived in apartments were the least affected (33.2 per cent). Those who lived in bungalows had a high prevalence (43.9 per cent).
- There was also a greater seroprevalence among men (52.8 per cent), compared to women (50.1 per cent).
- The greatest seroprevalence was found in those between the ages of 51 and 65 (54.8 per cent), while it was the least in those of age 66 years and above (39.8 per cent).
- Those in residences that lived at homes smaller than 150 square feet had the greatest seroprevalence (59.6 per cent), while those whose homes were greater than 501 sq ft had the least seroprevalence (34.6 per cent).
- Those who shared toilets had more seroprevalence (62.3 per cent), compared to those who did not (45.3 per cent).
- The serosurvey estimated the presence of Immunoglobulin G antibodies against the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19.
- Pune has 132,481 total COVID-19 cases, with 39,424 active cases and 3,247 deaths, as of August 17, 2020, according to private tracker covid19india.org.
- A mutation of the SARS-CoV-2 that was recently detected in Malaysia was more infectious, but also less deadly, reported news agency Reuters, quoting Paul Tambyah, senior consultant at the National University of Singapore and president-elect of the US-based International Society of Infectious Diseases.
- The mutation — known as D614G — was also found in Singapore, Tambyah was quoted as saying by Reuters. The mutation was not likely to impact the efficacy of a potential vaccine, according to him.
- Countries in the Western Pacific — a region with nearly 1.9 billion people — entered a new phase of the pandemic, said the World Health Organization (WHO), urging governments to continue to promote behaviour that protected community health, reported Time magazine.
- The WHO region of the Americas remains the most affected region in the past seven days, accounting for 53 per cent of all newly confirmed cases and 75 per cent of reported deaths, said the WHO in a press release.
- India now has 2,703,517 cases, with 54,300 cases added August 17, according to covid19india.org.
- There were 672,934 active COVID-19 cases across the country, while 51,925 have died from the disease, according to covid19india.org.
- The total number of people infected across the world rose to 22,049,452 in 213 countries and territories August 18, according to WHO and worldometers.info.
- The number of those recovered rose to 14,791,869, while 777,440 have died from COVID-19, according to the data.
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