As the coronavirus replicates, some copy errors often occur in the genetic instructions. These mutations can result in new strains of the coronavirus. See the main ones.
1. United Kingdom variant
Known as B.1.1.7, or 20I / 501Y.V1, the United Kingdom variant was discovered in December 2020 by British scientists and is present in 94 countries. Data suggest that this variant is between 30% and 80% more transmissible than the original coronavirus.
2. South Africa variant
A variant detected in October 2020, in Nelson Mandela Bay in South Africa, became known as 20H / 501Y.V2, is part of the B.1.351 strain and is already present in 48 countries. Adaptations to the coronavirus spike protein make this variant more resistant, and can reinfect people who have already survived other strains.
3. Brazil variant
P.1, also known as 20J / 501Y.V3, was discovered on January 6, 2021, at an airport near Tokyo, Japan, where four travelers from Brazil tested positive for the virus. The Brazil variant was confirmed in Manaus, where it causes a massive outbreak, and is already present in 25 countries. Preliminary studies indicate that this mutation can cancel out natural antibodies and reinfect people.
4. Variant of Los Angeles
Having an episodic start in the Californian city, the variant CAL.20C, or 20C / S: 452R; / B1429, was inactive until September, but took off as an outbreak in November, reaching other American states and 17 more countries. The mutations in this variant seem to impact the spike protein, increasing the affinity (“adherence”) of the variant for new host cells.
5. Danish variant of mink
Cluster 5, or? FVI-spike, became known worldwide as a variant of mink because this mustelid, infected by a coronavirus strain, started transmitting it to humans from September 2020. The variant was declared extinct in November , after Denmark, the source of the contamination, killed its entire population of 15 million mink.