Kuala Lumpur — A mutation of the Sars-CoV-2 virus that causes Covid-19 and that is 10 times more infectious than the original strain has also been detected in Malaysia.
The strain, called D614G, has been seen in other parts of the world.
The mutation was detected in samples taken from three cases linked to the so-called Sivagangga Cluster and one from the Ulu Tiram Cluster.
According to experts, the D614G strain produces more viral copies in the respiratory tract and spreads more efficiently from person to person as compared to other strains of the virus. However, the World Health Organization has been reported as saying that there was no evidence that the strain leads to a more severe form of the disease.
In addition, a scientific journal has said the mutation was unlikely to have a major impact on the efficacy of vaccines being developed.
In a Facebook post, the Malaysian Director-General of Health, Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah, said the D614G mutation was first detected in July.
He said: “It’s found 10 times easier to infect other individuals and spread easily if spread by the individual ‘super spreader’.
“Therefore, our main action is still in the method of using prevention and control of public health which is disciplined in practising the fully-set SOP which is, physical lock, high self-hygiene especially washing hands with water and soap, as well as wearing face masks especially in public places, crowded places, closed places and when in close chats.”