Late ‘barrier’ prevents new strain of nCoV

Avatar of Nick John By Nick John Dec19,2023 #Late #prevents
Late 'barrier' prevents new strain of nCoV 2
Late 'barrier' prevents new strain of nCoV 2

As a series of countries rushed to close their borders with the UK this week to set up a `fence` to prevent the new strain of nCoV, the moves evoked memories of how the world reacted when nCoV began to appear on a large scale in the spring.

This time, when countries are trying to prevent the spread of the new strain of nCoV discovered in the UK, border closure measures may also be too late.

The port in Dover, England was closed on December 21.

`It’s absurd,` said Dr. Peter Kremsner, director of Tübingen University Hospital in Germany.

He emphasized that scientists only have limited understanding of the new strain and its level of danger is still unclear.

Hans Kluge, WHO’s regional director for Europe, said that member states will strive to take a consistent approach to any threat posed by the new strain.

As there are increasing calls for Washington to follow in the footsteps of other countries that close their borders with Britain, Anthony Fauci, the top US infectious disease expert, urged caution and said it was likely the new strain had already arrived in the US.

`I don’t think that kind of harsh approach is necessary,` he said on December 21.

New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo said British Airways, Delta Air Lines and Virgin Atlantic have agreed to require passengers to present negative test results before boarding flights from England to New York.

Many countries already require passengers to have negative test results to enter the country, but border closures are a more drastic option.

On the evening of December 22, France relaxed the border closure order they imposed on December 20, leaving more than 1,000 truck drivers stranded.

The situation is roiling a tourism industry already battered by the pandemic, forcing millions to change their vacation plans and adding to anxiety at the end of an already bleak year.

Meanwhile, another strain of nCoV is causing concern as it spreads in South Africa.

Sweden has stopped allowing people from Denmark to enter the country after a new strain of nCoV in the UK was discovered here.

The new strain in South Africa has been the subject of much research after doctors discovered people infected with it had higher viral loads in the upper respiratory tract.

Because it is unclear how widespread these two new strains are, it is impossible to assess the impact of the British and South African `quarantine` efforts in containing the virus.

Furthermore, another reason to pay attention is that the UK has the world’s leading genetic surveillance efforts, so detecting a new strain in the UK is understandable, while it may not have been detected if it appeared.

Britain has sequenced about 150,000 nCoV genomes in an effort to identify mutations, accounting for half of the world’s genomic data on nCoV, said Sharon Peacock, director of Covid-19 Genomics U.K.

In Wales, home to three million people, geneticists last week decoded more coronavirus gene sequences than scientists in France, a country of 67 million people, have done since the pandemic began.

`It’s likely that similar mutations are appearing around the world,` he said.

British officials said they discovered the first cases of infection with the new strain of nCoV in Kent, southeast England, on September 20.

That meant that by the time Prime Minister Boris Johnson spoke on the evening of December 19 to announce new lockdown measures for millions of people in and around London, the strain had been spreading for months.

French and German officials on December 22 admitted that the new strain may have spread in their countries.

Supporters of closures say they could help keep cases of the new strain lower.

If the new strain proves to be more contagious and becomes widespread, it could complicate global vaccination efforts.

Sahin said at a press conference on December 22 that if they need to modify the vaccine to deal with the new strain, they can complete it in 6 weeks, but they will need to apply for additional authorization from regulators and that may

He also said that if the virus becomes stronger, the goal of achieving the level of immunity needed to end the pandemic will become more difficult.

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