There is nothing to indicate a mutation of the SARS-CoV-2 virus of Greek origin, according to infectious disease expert Gikas Magiorkinis and Rector of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens Thanos Dimopoulos, both of whom are professors at the NKUA School of Medicine.
In the case of strain B.1.1.318, which is the second most common variant in Greece in recent months, both professors said that it was first detected in Nigeria and then found in many other countries on the GISAID platform, including the UK, Belgium , Austria, Germany, Sweden, Finland, France, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Slovenia, USA, Canada, Australia, Japan, Singapore, Bangladesh, Argentina, Gambia, Gambon and Turkey.
Hence, there is no indication that a particular strain is of Greek origin or is in any way specific to Greece, nor is there clear evidence that it is more transmissible, dangerous, or less susceptible to vaccines, and is not on the list of dangerous strains.
The scientists explained that naming new variants of coronavirus is a complex process, given that mutation creation is extremely common in RNA viruses, even if they have a correction mechanism such as SARS-CoV-2.
When this mutation process results in a new strain that spreads through the population and is different enough, either by accident or because it has some advantage, it creates a new lineage called a variant, which in the past has been named after the location where it was first introduced. discovered.
They added that this method has now been abandoned in favor of a method that uses a combination of letters and numbers that indicate the evolutionary history of the strain.