A Brazilian woman became the first person in the world to be re-infected with the South African variant of the novel coronavirus known as E484K, state news agency Agencia Brasil reported on Friday. .
This case, discovered by researchers at the D’Or Institute for Research and Education in the state of Bahia (northeast), concerns a 45-year-old woman who tested positive for the new coronavirus last May. and who was positive again the following October with this mutation. In both cases, the patient did not present with severe symptoms.
Originally identified in South Africa, the E484K mutation has already been detected in Brazil, but this is the first case of reinfection by this mutation.
To confirm reinfection, it is necessary to undertake an analysis of the genome of the two viruses and compare the sequence of the RNA molecule to see if they are indeed two different strains.
Researchers at the D’Or Institute have expressed concern over the finding, because the mutation can lead to alterations that can prevent the action of antibodies from treating patients.
“This discovery serves as a warning and reinforces the need to maintain control measures for the pandemic through social distancing, as well as the need to speed up the vaccination process”, warned a researcher from the institute, Bruno Solano.
In Brazil, at least five variants of the new coronavirus have already been discovered.