A number one German virologist on Monday downplayed fears in regards to the new mutation of the coronavirus spreading by way of the UK – and questioned Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s declare that the pressure is 70 % extra infectious, in keeping with experiences.

“I wonder whether a scientist gave an estimate, perhaps asked what he would say if he had to give a figure, and then it takes on a life of its own,” Christian Drosten stated, the Daily Mail reported.

“Then it enters politics and politicians use this figure and the media takes it up. Suddenly there’s a figure out there — 70 percent — and nobody even knows what it means,” he instructed Deutschlandfunk radio, the UK outlet reported.

“The fact that top politicians are reciting scientific content to the media, saying that there’s been a mutation and that cases are growing by this and that much here and there — that’s unusual,” the director of virology at Berlin’s Charite Hospital added.

Drosten additionally stated it was unclear whether or not the spike in circumstances in Kent and the South East was even brought on by the brand new pressure, N501Y.  

He stated the brand new variant may merely have already “come to the surface” throughout an uptick in circumstances that would have already occurred for different causes.

“The question is, was it the virus’s fault, or was it simply that in the area where this virus happened to be… methods of transmission came into play which would have brought any other virus to the surface?” he stated, the Daily Mail reported.

The virology knowledgeable famous that British scientists had not talked about with any certainty that the brand new pressure was extra infectious.

“If you want to know if a virus is more transmissible, you’d have to look at pairs of people who were infected. You’d have to see who infected whom and how long it took,” Drosten stated.

Germany is certainly one of greater than a dozen European nations that have already shut their borders to flights from the UK because of the mutant pressure – however Drosten stated the brand new variant was possible already in his nation.

 “We know that it’s already in Italy, in Holland, in Belgium, in Denmark, even in Australia,” he stated, including that he was “not so worried” in regards to the mutated bug and noting that none of these nations had reported a surge in associated circumstances.

“I am open to new scientific insights, and in science there are always surprises, but I am everything but worried in this respect,” Drosten instructed the German outlet, in keeping with the UK’s Guardian.

On Sunday, the Dutch authorities confirmed {that a} case of the brand new mutation had been recognized within the nation originally of December, suggesting it might already have already already been current there for a while, the outlet reported.

So far, it doesn’t look like spreading as quickly within the Netherlands as within the UK, Ab Osterhaus, emeritus professor of virology on the Erasmus University in Rotterdam, instructed the Algemeen Dagblad, the Guardian reported.

“In areas where the number of infections rise particularly fast, it tends to get linked to the mutation,” Ostarhaus stated. “But I don’t know at all yet whether that’s justified.”

Experts stress that there was no proof that vaccines — together with the Pfizer-BioNTech shot being deployed in Britain — wouldn’t shield in opposition to the brand new variant, Reuters reported.

The discovery of the brand new pressure got here simply months earlier than vaccines are anticipated to be broadly accessible because the pandemic has killed about 1.7 million individuals worldwide and greater than 67,000 in Britain.

The nations that have already suspended journey from the UK embody France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Austria, Ireland, Belgium, Israel, Canada, India, Poland, Spain, Switzerland, Russia, Jordan and Hong Kong.

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