PGC: Possible PH Covid-19 variant to surface if there are many cases
MANILA, Philippines — If there are more coronavirus disease (Covid-19) cases in the country, there is a possibility that a Philippine variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus—the causative agent of the disease—could surface, the director of the Philippine Genome Center (PGC) said Saturday.
“Gusto ko lang po sabihin na may possibility na magkakaroon din ng Philippine variant, pero yung possibility na yun ay mangyayari lang if the cases are many kasi ang virus, kailangan niya ng host para siya mag-mutate,” PGC director Dr. Cynthia Saloma said in an online press briefing when asked if the current dominant variant in the Philippines, D614G, has already mutated.
(I just want to say that there is a possibility that a Philippine variant will surface, but that possibility will happen if the cases are many because the virus needs a host to exist.)
This dominant variant, the D614G, was detected in August 2020.
“So it is very, very important for us na talagang ibaba natin yung ating mga cases dito sa Pilipinas,” she added.
(So it is very, very important for us to lower our cases here in the Philippines.)
The United States Center for Disease Control and Prevention, in its official website, said that there are currently three variants of Covid-19 circulating globally. The variants are B.1.1.7 that was detected in the United Kingdom, P.1 that was detected in Brazil, and 1.351 which originated from South Africa.
The B.1.1.7 variant, which is said to be 70 percent more infectious, has reached the Philippines, and there are currently 17 cases, as per the Department of Health (DOH).
According to Saloma, the UK variant is already a mutation of the D614G variant.
“Now, itong UK variant actually is already a mutation of the D614G kasi it already contains the D614G and on top of that, mayroon pa siyang iba-ibang mutations. halimbawa yung N501Y,” she said.
(Now, this UK variant is actually a mutation of the D614G because it already contains the D614G and on top of that, it also has other mutations, such as the N501Y.)
“So the virus naturally mutates, it is part of its institution, pero para ma-control natin yung continuance, emergence ng mga dangerous or high samples of concern, it is imperative na mababa yung ating cases dito para walang host kung saan pwede mag-mutate yung virus,” she added
(So the virus naturally mutates, it is part of the institution. But to control the continuance, the emergence of the dangerous or high samples of concern, it is imperative that our cases should be low so that there is no host where the virus can mutate.)
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