Patient has no travel history or contact with people who have traveled to other countries, which indicates a possible evolution of P1
The coordinator of the Covid-19 Contingency Center in Sao Paulo, Paulo Menezes, confirmed on Wednesday 31 that a variant of the coronavirus similar to the South African in Sorocaba, São Paulo. “The information we have is the identification of a case of the sul-African variant. It is not a new variant, but it is new in Brazil, ”said Menezes. During a press conference at the Palácio dos Bandeirantes, the CEO of the Butantan Institute, Dimas Covas, explained that, although the genetic material is similar to that of B.1.351, from South Africa, it is possible that the virus is an evolution of the Brazilian variant, the P.1. This is because the patient with Covid-19 has no travel history and has also not met with people who traveled outside Brazil.
“In fact, yesterday we finished the analysis of the genetic material of the laboratory network with Butantan and the university students who are doing this work, and, in Sorocaba, a new variant was identified. It is a variant that resembles the South African variant, although there is no history of travel or contact with travelers from South Africa. Therefore, there is also the possibility that it is already an evolution of our P1 towards this mutation South African ”, explains Dimas. “It is a variant that already has some signatures a little different from the original variant, which indicates a probable local origin from variant P.1”, he added. If the hypothesis of a new variant is confirmed, the director of the Butantan Institute says that it is necessary to analyze the real incidence of the strain. “If it is just a case, we will keep the measures that are in progress. Other than that, genomic monitoring of other sites, genetic sequencing, to observe the emergence of these variants ”, he said. According to him, the appearance of variants at this time is expected.