The SARS-CoV-2 virus has picked up random changes to its genetic sequence as it has taken a serious toll on the world. Most of these changes in the genetic material of the virus have made no difference in the behavior of the virus, as per the report. However, one early mutation during the start of the pandemic has given more power to it. Many studies have shown that an early mutation has helped the virus to spread person to person more effectively. It has made it difficult for experts to contain the pandemic. This early mutation of the virus is known as 614G. It has been found in eastern China for the first time. It has transmitted across New York City and Europe quite quickly. This variant of the coronavirus has taken over major parts of the world within months. At the same time, it has displaced other variants of the virus.
Experts from Los Alamos National Laboratory have claimed that the variant has evolved the virus to infect people more efficiently than ever. Many experts have been skeptical about this claim saying the variant might just be lucky, which surfaces more than often by chance. Nevertheless, a study of hamsters and human lung tissue and genetic analysis of outbreaks have confirmed that 614G mutation has a distinct advantage over other variants of the virus. Experts have said that the mutated virus can more easily infect people as compared to the original variant, which has been spotted in the Wuhan city of China. Experts have said that a subtle change in the genome of the virus can lead to a big ripple effect. They have claimed that after doing an extensive analysis, it can be said that the mutation has caused this massive pandemic. As per other studies, the original variant of the virus has been equally contagious. It would have spread around the world in any case. However, the mutation has made the pandemic spread farther and faster than the original virus.
New studies from the UK and the US have put an end to all the speculations. Experts have found that the community spread of the virus in the UK has grown faster when it has been seeded by the 614G variant of the virus. At the same time, the community transmission has been much slower when it has been seeded with the original variant. In another study, the mutated virus has infected human bronchial and nasal tissue in a cell culture dish more quickly as compared to the Wuhan ancestor. Scientists have been unsure whether an inherent advantage has been the reason for the global control of the mutated virus. Dr. Kristian Anderson a geneticist at Scripps Research at La Jolla as well has said that many countries have been able to contain the virus in the beginning but later have become vulnerable to it. This explains that the mutated virus has more transmissibility than the original virus. There have been many nations such as Vietnam, South Korea, and Japan, which have been able to contain the pandemic initially, but the second wave of the virus has hit these nations more strongly. Some experts have found that when the mutated virus persists in the big groups, it transmits much faster, which is difficult to contain. Other scientists have said that a lack of proper containment efforts is responsible for resurgent outbreaks. A team of British scientists has done a study where they have studied the largest database of coronavirus genome sequences in the world. They as well have found that indeed it is the new variant, which leads to much faster transmission of the virus.