Brussels: A 90-year-old unvaccinated lady in Belgium has died after being concurrently contaminated with Alpha and Beta — two completely different variants of concern (VOCs) of COVID-19, researchers have stated. The case advocates the must be alert to co-infections.
A staff of researchers from the OLV Hospital in Aalst, offered the nonagenarian lady’s case on the ongoing 2021 European Congress of Scientific Microbiology and Infectious Illnesses, happening on-line between July 9 and 12.
“This is among the first documented circumstances of co-infection with two SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern,” stated lead writer and molecular biologist Dr Anne Vankeerberghen from the OLV Hospital.
“Each these variants have been circulating in Belgium on the time, so it’s possible that the girl was co-infected with completely different viruses from two completely different folks. Sadly, we do not know the way she turned contaminated,” Vankeerberghen added.
The staff reported that the girl, whose medical historical past was unremarkable, was admitted to the hospital on March 3, 2021, after a spate of falls. She examined constructive for COVID on the identical day. She lived alone and acquired nursing care at residence, and had not been vaccinated in opposition to COVID-19.
Additional exams for VOCs with PCR confirmed the presence of two completely different strains of the virus — Alpha (B117), which originated within the UK, and Beta (B1351), first detected in South Africa.
Initially, there have been no indicators of respiratory misery and the affected person had good oxygen saturation. Nevertheless, she developed quickly worsening respiratory signs and died 5 days later.
In January 2021, scientists in Brazil reported that two folks had been concurrently contaminated with two completely different strains of the coronavirus — the Brazilian variant often known as B1128 (E484Ok) and a novel variant VUI-NP13L, which had beforehand been found in Rio Grande do Sul. However the examine has but to be printed in a scientific journal. Earlier analysis has reported folks contaminated with completely different influenza strains.
“Whether or not the co-infection of the 2 variants of concern performed a job within the quick deterioration of the affected person is tough to say,” Vankeerberghen stated.
“Thus far, there have been no different printed circumstances. Nevertheless, the worldwide incidence of this phenomenon might be underestimated as a consequence of restricted testing for variants of concern and the shortage of a easy solution to determine co-infections with whole-genome sequencing,” she famous.