SARS-CoV-2 has caused tremendous deaths globally. It is of great value to predict the evolutionary direction of SARS-CoV-2. In this paper, we proposed a novel mathematical model that could predict the evolutionary trend of SARS-CoV-2. We focus on the mutational effects on viral assembly capacity. A robust coarse-grained mathematical model is constructed to simulate the virus dynamics in the host body. Both virulence and transmissibility can be quantified in this model. A delicate equilibrium point that optimizes the transmissibility can be numerically obtained. Based on this model, the virulence of SARS-CoV-2 might further decrease, accompanied by an enhancement of transmissibility. However, this trend is not continuous; its virulence will not disappear but remains at a relatively stable range. A virus assembly model which simulates the virus packing process is also proposed. It can be explained why a few mutations would lead to a significant divergence in clinical performance, both in the overall particle formation quantity and virulence. This research provides a novel mathematical attempt to elucidate the evolutionary driving force in RNA virus evolution.

Fuente: Computers in Biology and Medicine
Available online 6 January 2023, 106510