- There is a confirmation that a lethal variant of COVID-19 is in Nigeria
- The UK has revealed that the variant, known as B1525, has the ability to resist the effects of vaccines
- The revelation was made by a group of medical researchers from the University of Edinburgh
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A group of medical scientists from Edinburgh University has claimed that a variant of the COVID-19 known as the B1525 has been traced to Nigeria.
The researchers in their latest report also said the variant has some mutations that have been a recipe for serious worry, The Guardian reports.
However, the scientists maintain that more studies need to be done on the B1525 to ascertain its peculiarities.
The group reported:
“...the variant has similarities in its genome to the Kent variant, B117, and it contains a number of mutations that have worried researchers, including the E484K mutation to the spike protein – a protein found on the outside of the virus that plays an important role in helping the virus to enter cells.”
What is even more fearful is the fact that an associate professor of Cellular Microbiology at the University of Reading, Simon Clarke, has claimed that the same variant of the pandemic may have the potentials to resist the efficacy of vaccines.
Clarke, however, admitted that the degree of transmission and the seriousness of the symptoms associated with the variants are not yet known.
“We don’t yet know how well this [new] variant will spread, but if it is successful it can be presumed that immunity from any vaccine or previous infection will be blunted.
“I think that until we know more about these variants, any variants which carry E484K should be subject to surge testing as it seems to confer resistance to immunity, however that is generated.”
Meanwhile, reliable health experts in Nigeria had come out to douse the tension with facts about the rumoured presence of a variant of COVID-19.
One of such persons who recently gave their professional position on the issue is Cihkwe Ihekweazu, the director-general of the Nigeria Cente for Disease Control (NCDC).
Agreeing with the clear fact that viruses naturally mutate, Ihekweazu on Thursday, December 24, pointed out clearly that the disease was not yet in the country, adding that what Nigerians should seriously take note of is that calmness and safety are key.
Onyirioha Nnamdi is a graduate of Literature and English Language at the University of Lagos. He is a Politics/Current Affairs Editor who writes on news and political topics for Legit.ng. He brings into his reporting a wealth of experience in creative and analytical writing. Nnamdi has a major interest in local and global politics.