30% to 100% more lethal than the previously known strains is the highly transmissible variant of SARS-CoV-2, which has spread around the world after its initial location in Britain at the end of 2020, as researchers announced today.
In a study comparing mortality rates in Britain between people screened for a variant of the coronavirus called B.1.1.7 and people infected with other strains, scientists found that the new strain is characterized by significantly higher mortality, as broadcast by AMPE.
The B.1.1.7 variant was identified in the UK in September 2020 and has since spread to more than 100 countries.
It has 23 mutations in the genetic code of the virus – a relatively large number of mutations – and some of them were much more contagious. British scientists consider it to be 40% to 70% more contagious than the other dominant variants to date coronavirus.
In the British study published today in the British Medical Journal, infection with the new variant resulted in 227 deaths in a sample of 54,906 patients. Covid-19, compared with 141 deaths in the same sample of patients infected with other strains.
“Combined with its ability to transmit at speed, this makes B.1.1.7 a threat that must be taken seriouslySaid Robert Chalen, a researcher at Exeter University who participated in the study.