Is the UK strain really 70 per cent more transmissible? (No.)
This is an abc podcast. This is corona cost. A daily point caused all about the corona virus. I'm health reported taken tyler. Journalists stelter norman swan. It's wednesday the thirteenth of january. Today we've got a special guest for a very important issue. That's right we've been getting in of questions about lots of different variants of the virus that are circulating around the world and is room. Is that some of them are much more transmissible than the original version of coronavirus. So today we have professor. Edward harms from that marie bushy institute for infectious diseases and security at the university of sydney. What a mouthful. welcome eddie. Well could be a high must be. So let's just start with the basics here. The virus has been mutating since day one. And what we've been talk- consistently when we've covered this corona cassidy's particularly from groups like the bedford group in seattle is these are variants. That people think are behaving differently. But in fact it's human behavior that's making the difference rather than the variants. We're gonna talk today but three variants but we'll start with the one. That's i noticed. In britain where the people are starting to say. Well this one is truly transmissible where we've arrived at with this new variant. Yes initially as she said correctly the virus mutating since they were and that's absolute expected aren a current ivar. Take all the time so it was completely the norm that we saw mutations arising. I'm yeah some of those may have increased infections a little bit but probably not seen and it's probably human behavior dr epidemic since about september late september. Uk we've not seen a new variant or lady or strangling this actually kurt drawings by not just one mutation but a lot of detections is picked up maybe seventeen all segmentation one forest. I'm fat particular. Lineage will strain is spreading spreading extremely rapidly. Pretty compelling thing me is not just wrapping itself but it's replacing all the other strains variance in the population and that suggests it's got some advantages fits is doing better is transmitting. More readily that's now become the complete dominant strain e kepchik in fact the uk around london. And it's spreading slowly to other countries today are not some forty five. Different countries have new variant in it including australia obviously is increasing greeks on and denmark and the estimates appear to be that increases. This famous on number talked about in the past three dr number. How many offspring barth leaves by between point four point seven orange. It doesn't sound like very much getting in terms of champions ability. Actually a lot ceasefires really does this. News does really appear to be spreading quickly so goes from a sense of two point five.