90-year-old Belgian woman infected with 'two virus variants at once'

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The outbreak of the coronavirus illness  (COVID-19) successful  Liege A healtcare idiosyncratic takes a swab illustration from a idiosyncratic to trial for the coronavirus illness (COVID-19), astatine a drive-in investigating tract successful Liege, Belgium, Aug 10, 2020. (Photo: REUTERS/Yves Herman)

11 Jul 2021 07:48AM (Updated: 11 Jul 2021 07:50AM)

PARIS: A 90-year-old pistillate who died aft falling sick with COVID-19 was infected with some the Alpha and Beta variants of the coronavirus astatine the aforesaid time, researchers successful Belgium said connected Sunday (Jul 12), adding that the uncommon improvement whitethorn beryllium underestimated.

The unvaccinated woman, who lived unsocial and received at-home nursing care, was admitted to the OLV Hospital successful the Belgian metropolis of Aalst aft a spate of falls successful March and tested affirmative for COVID-19 the aforesaid day.

While her oxygen levels were initially good, her information deteriorated rapidly and she died 5 days later.

When aesculapian unit tested for the beingness of immoderate variants of interest they recovered that she was carrying some the Alpha strain, which originated successful Britain, and the Beta variant archetypal detected successful South Africa.

"Both these variants were circulating successful Belgium astatine the time, truthful it is apt that the woman was co-infected with antithetic viruses from 2 antithetic people," said molecular biologist Anne Vankeerberghen from the OLV Hospital who led the research.

"Unfortunately, we don't cognize however she became infected."

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Vankeerberghen said it was hard to accidental whether the co-infection played a relation successful the accelerated deterioration of the patient.

The research, which has not yet been submitted to a aesculapian diary for publication, is being presented astatine the European Congress of Clinical Microbiology & Infectious Diseases.

While Vankeerberghen said successful a property merchandise that determination had been "no different published cases" of akin co-infections, she added that the "phenomenon is astir apt underestimated".

This is due to the fact that of constricted investigating for variants of concern, she said, calling for an summation successful the usage of accelerated PCR investigating to observe known variant mutations.

In January, scientists successful Brazil reported that 2 radical had been simultaneously infected with 2 antithetic strains of the coronavirus, but the survey has yet to beryllium published successful a technological journal.

In comments reacting to the research, Lawrence Young, a virologist and Professor of Molecular Oncology astatine the University of Warwick, said it was not a astonishment to find an idiosyncratic infected with much than 1 strain.

"This survey does item the request for much studies to find whether corruption with aggregate variants of interest affects the objective people of COVID-19 and whether this successful immoderate mode compromises the efficacy of vaccination," helium added.

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