Too early to evaluate if Covid-19 mutation in minks can affect vaccine: WHO chief scientist

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Chief Scientist on the World Health Organization Soumya Swaminathan stated on Friday it was too early to resolve whether or not the coronavirus mutation discovered within the farmed mink inhabitants in Denmark might affect the efficacy of vaccines.

Denmark, a significant mink fur exporter, has stated it could must kill as much as 17 million minks over the concern of the latest mutation spreading back to people.

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“We need to wait and see what the implications are, but I don’t think we should come to any conclusions whether this particular mutation is going to impact vaccine efficacy or not. We don’t have any evidence at the moment that it would,” Swaminathan advised a digital press briefing.

The coronavirus mutations in minks must be studied correctly before consultants can say if there will be any issues and what sort, Maria Van Kerkhove, Covid-19 Technical Lead at WHO Health Emergencies Programme, stated.

“What we understand is the minks have been infected with contact from humans, it circulates in the mink and then it could pass back to humans. So there’s always a concern when you have circulation and transmission from humans to animals and then from animals to humans. So there is a number of activities that are ongoing to understand the situation in Denmark,” Van Kerkhove stated.

According to the professional, mutations are regular and consultants have been monitoring all modifications within the virus for the reason that starting.

“In this situation, there is a suggestion that some of these mutations may have some implications, but we need to do the proper studies to evaluate this. and that is ongoing right now with colleagues at the SSI in Denmark as well as our international working group,” Van Kerkhove stated.

What the research wants is extra sequences to look at, the professional stated.

“As this virus continues to circulate the globe, as we see it in mink, in different populations, those sequences need to be shared because they need to be evaluated, they need to be studied, they need to be discussed,” Van Kerkhove stated.

There is not any proof but that this explicit mutation behaves distinctly from others, Michael J. Ryan, the manager director of WHO’s Health Emergencies Programme, stated.

“It may have a slightly different signature, but it is still the same virus. What we have to evaluate over time is whether this virus has any difference in transmission or clinical severity or whether there are any implications for diagnostics or vaccines. But we’re a long, long way away from making any determination of that kind,” Ryan stated.

[Attribution HT]

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