A key amino-acid change might underlie the coronavirus variant’s ferocious infectivity. As the world grapples with the hyper-infectious Delta coronavirus variant, scientists are racing to understand the biological basis for its behaviour. A slew of studies has highlighted an amino-acid change present in Delta that might contribute to its swift spread. Delta is at least 40% more transmissible than is the Alpha variant identified in the United Kingdom in late 2020, epidemiological studies suggest.
“The key hallmark of Delta is that transmissibility seems to be ramping up to the next notch,” says Pei-Yong Shi, a virologist at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston. “We thought Alpha was pretty bad, very good at spreading. This one seems to be even more.”…
Published: 20 August 2021