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GlobalData Epidemiologist Report: New Brazil variant ‘to be taken seriously’

By Paul Dennis

3 March

Globally, the total confirmed cases of Covid-19 have reached over 114,871,000, with more than 2,551,000 deaths and 75,617,000 recoveries.

The US, India, and Brazil continue to lead the world in total confirmed Covid-19 cases.

Although daily confirmed cases in Brazil trended downward slightly the last week of February, daily deaths appear to be ticking upwards, already exceeding a little over 1,600 today.

Brazil remains second in total deaths, surpassed only by the US, and followed by Mexico, India, the UK, and Italy.

In late 2020, the city of Manaus, Brazil, which was particularly hard-hit during the first wave of the pandemic, experienced a resurgence in Covid cases.

A preprint of a new genome sequencing study investigating the responsible variant, P.1, was posted to Github at the end of February.

Nuno Faria, from Imperial College London, and colleagues used viruses sampled in Manaus to estimate that P.1 may be 1.4-2.2 times more transmissible and evade 25-61% of protected immunity.

The authors do not yet know how these findings will translate outside of Manaus but feel P.1 is a variant to take seriously.

Shaina Stacy, PhD, MPH, Senior Epidemiologist at GlobalData

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