(19FORTYFIVE) – The coronavirus is indeed mutating as it spreads around the world, but according to a new study out of University College London’s Genetics Institute, there’s no evidence that the virus is becoming more infectious.
The research, published in Nature Communications, analyzed a massive global dataset of virus genomes from more than 46,000 people with COVID-19 from ninety-nine countries. The researchers eventually were able to identify more than 12,700 mutations in the SARS-CoV-2 virus.
“The number of SARS-CoV-2 genomes being generated for scientific research is staggering. We realized early on in the pandemic that we needed new approaches to analyze enormous amounts of data in close to real time to flag new mutations in the virus that could affect its transmission or symptom severity,” the study’s co-author Lucy van Dorp, a professor at University College London’s Genetics Institute, said in a news release.