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  • South Africa say's a new strain of the coronavirus is driving a second wave off infections in the country.

  • Experts say the new strain appears to be more infectious than the original virus.

  • On that cases are spreading faster.

  • It is still unclear if it is also more deadly.

  • Scientists say the new variant is different from the one currently causing concern in Britain.

  • The number off daily cases has doubled in South Africa over the last two weeks.

  • For more on this, I'm joined by virologist professor Barry Shoot.

  • He's the founding president off the African Virology Association and is chairing South Africa's Ministerial Advisory Committee on Coronavirus Vaccine Development.

  • Welcome Thio dw news.

  • Africa PROPER We understand that this new variant off covered 19 in South Africa that it seems to be spreading faster than the current one.

  • How worried are you about it?

  • Yeah, I just certainly a sense of concern.

  • Um, this variant it's called the in 501 Why ours is very version to be to the version.

  • One actually was in land in in the UK it's also five for one hour, a little bit different.

  • We've got different mutations, but like one in England.

  • We are very concerned because the spreading very rapidly.

  • In fact, it's fast displacing the original covert virus, and this is really going to become the dominant virus.

  • So in many parts of the country, particularly in the south and the Eastern Cape, the Western Cape and KwaZulu until provinces, this has really become the major dominant strain.

  • And I say is responsible, really, for a steep increase in cases in our second wave Professor, many people in South Africa have traveled and will be gathering groups over the Christmas holiday.

  • How concerned are you about that?

  • In light of what you've just said?

  • Yeah, this is the problem.

  • We were actually we're anticipating a second wave later in the probably in January.

  • February has come a lot earlier for two reasons.

  • One of them is that he had a big, super spreading event, Uh, in what's called the Rage Festival.

  • This is where the students who finished the high school they have get togethers and many thousands of these students get together, and that's probably initiated the epidemic.

  • And now this new strain is actually amplified it, and this is really become Now the doctor tightened restrictions Yeah, well, I have.

  • They have.

  • They are increasing.

  • Their have increased some restrictions, but you know, it's a balancing act.

  • They will the balance.

  • What's the people need for their livelihood as you guys guys controlling the disease?

  • So it's the old lives was livelihood uh, equation.

  • So they have increased some restrictions, but balancing it against what To keep the economy going.

  • And what is the discovery off this new variant of the virus mean for for vaccine development, Professor, Well, fortunately so far does not appear that this is what you call it an escape mutation.

  • In other words, that the either people that are immune from previous infection or if they have the vaccine that they're going not to be protected, it doesn't seem to affect that.

  • That part of it, the vaccine does appear to be effective.

  • So for there are studies which are ongoing, but hopefully it will demonstrate that it is not affected by by any changes and androgynous city.

  • In other words, the vaccine identity.

  • All right, that's Professor Barry Shoop speaking to us in South Africa.

  • Thank you.

South Africa say's a new strain of the coronavirus is driving a second wave off infections in the country.

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Mutated coronavirus strain drives infections in South Africa | COVID Update

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    林宜悉 posted on 2020/12/24
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