Malaysia has detected a deadly strain of COVID-19 which has claimed 7 lakh lives globally. The new strain is called D614G and is said to be 10 times more infectious.
The news was confirmed by Malayasia top health officials in a Facebook post on August 15. The mutation has been found in at least 3 of the 45 cases in a cluster linked to a restaurant owner. The restaurant owner had reportedly returned from India and breached Malaysia’s quarantine rules.
Authorities have sentenced the restaurant owner to a prison term and imposed heavy fine. The new deadlier strain has also been found in another cluster involving people returning from the Philippines.
Malaysian official says that the mutation spread 10 times faster and can be easily transmitted by a super spreader. The strain has sparked concerns in Malaysia about its impact on vaccine studies that are underway. This mutation has now become the predominant variant in Europe and the USA. But WHO hasn’t found any evidence about such mutations leading to more serious infections.
The virus has infected more than 21M people worldwide and is showing no sign of slowing down. Doctors and researchers from all over the world are trying to find an effective vaccine with over 100 vaccines under development. Though Russia has claimed to have developed the Sputnik 5 vaccine, however health experts raised questions about its safety.