South African COVID strain found in Moco


Photo used with permission from Google Commons

The new South African Covid strand has been found in Maryland.

Just when people thought the pandemic was beginning to be under control and the numbers were going down, news of a new strand “whose scientific name is 501.V2 or B.1351”  has emerged from South Africa in Maryland.

The new strand is believed to be much more contagious and aggressive, and researchers are working to prevent its spread. This virus is known to mutate itself into new versions. What makes this virus different from the others is the fact that it enters through the proteins of the human cells. It has a mutation that dodges the human immune system

In Maryland, there are three confirmed cases as of Jan . 30, announced by Maryland Governor Larry Hogan in a press conference. The first case involved a Baltimore resident who said he did not travel abroad and yet got the virus. This has worried county officials because it is highly contagious and could be a sign of community transmission. The other two cases confirmed are Montgomery County residents who recently traveled abroad. “Contact tracing is underway and close contacts are isolating,” Hogan said. 

The new virus could have a huge impact on the community as this new strand is highly transmissible. “When I found out about the South African strain I was scared and so was my family as it can easily be passed to anyone,” alum Devansh Mishra said. 

Since the South African Covid scare in early February, Covid rates have dropped. “I have started to wear double masks as I have gotten the virus before and would like to stay as precautious as I can, ” alum Avi Greenfeld said.