Another more aggressive coronavirus variant is spreading in Slovakia alongside the British variant that was detected as dominant in the country in early February.
The analysis of positive samples from the autumn of 2020 have proved the presence of a new variant, marked B.1.258, that has been spreading in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, according to Virological website.
B.1.258 has developed independently from the British variant and has been present in Slovakia for a longer time now.
"We have been saying it for weeks. This is about the samples from November and December, for instance from Trenčín and from the mass testing," virologist Boris Klempa told the Sme daily.
The virus is reportedly more infectious than the previous strains and may be linked with a slightly higher viral load, according Klempa.
In Slovakia, the presence of the new variant was confirmed in 25 percent of the 72 analysed samples. In the Czech Republic it was found in about 59 percent of the 251 samples. It has also been confirmed in Sweden, Denmark, Austria and Poland.
Health Minister Marek Krajčí (OĽaNO) said that this strain originated from Italy.
The recent data from January and February suggests that the British variant has started to dominate and has pushed the B.1.258 variant out, Klempa told Sme.
11. Feb 2021 at 18:41 | Compiled by Spectator staff