MOSCOW, 5 March – RIA Novosti. Academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences, deputy of the State Duma, former chief sanitary doctor of the Russian Federation Gennady Onishchenko called the coronavirus “rather conservative” and noted that it is not characterized by such changes as for the influenza virus.
Earlier, the president of the Italian Society of Virology, Professor Arnaldo Caruso, told the AdnKronos news agency that Italian microbiologists had discovered a “Nigerian” strain of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus in the north of the country, in Brescia (Lombardy region); scientists fear that the available vaccines will be ineffective against it. “The strain is the same. The new strain will be when the next time, somewhere in China or in the other end of Southeast Asia, the coronavirus passes from animals to humans, this will be a new strain, “Onishchenko told RIA Novosti.
What is now called coronavirus strains, he added, are “subtypes,” not new strains. Therefore, the subtypes that are now spreading are the same strain that mutates and acquires new properties. “But it's still COVID-19,” the parliamentarian explained.
He expressed the hope that all coronavirus vaccines developed in the Russian Federation should work against all subtypes of this virus.
“Therefore, today there is a high probability of hope that these vaccines that have been developed (in the Russian Federation) will work (against all subtypes of coronavirus),” Onishchenko concluded.