Riccardo Papa

What makes the omicron variant so unique? What have we learned thus far?

It is important to understand that scientists refer to mutations to define changes in the genetic code of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) when compared with the first genetic sequence identified in December 2019. These alterations in the virus genetic sequence can modify the characteristics of its proteins, which represent the building blocks that the virus uses to infect new hosts, cells and make more copies of its own. However, not every mutation improves a virus ability to spread or be more lethal. In fact, most either harm the virus or have little effect. By keeping track of the combination of such mutations, scientists have been able to assign names to new versions of the circulating SARS-CoV-2 viral strains over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic. Such variants of SARS-CoV-2 have been proven to have different characteristics, such that they may spread more easily or be able to resist existing vaccines or treatments or no impact when compared with previous and currently circulating virus.

Otras columnas de Riccardo Papa

domingo, 31 de enero de 2021

El complicado camino hacia la erradicación del COVID-19

Aunque necesitamos entender si las variantes actuales ‘revigorizan’ ciertas características del virus, y cómo lo hacen, posiblemente el enfoque principal debería estar en lo que podría venir por delante, ya que es probable que ocurran nuevos cambios, dice Riccardo Papa

sábado, 30 de enero de 2021

The complicated path of COVID-19 eradication

While we need to understand if and how the current strains ‘reinvigorate’ certain characteristics of the virus, possibly the strongest focus should be given to what may come ahead of us as more changes will likely appear, writes Riccardo Papa

viernes, 25 de diciembre de 2020

Mutations are part of life: the biology of COVID-19

The current pandemic highlights not only the need to provide fast scientific studies and recommendations, but also problems that are more connected to our society and how opinions and behaviors are guided and respected by the general public, writes Riccardo Papa

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