UK coronavirus variant may be more able to infect children
Briefing reporters on the latest findings, scientists from the government’s New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (NERVTAG) who are tracking the variant said it had swiftly become the dominant strain in the south of Britain, and could soon do the same across the country.
“We now have high confidence that this variant does have a transmission advantage over other virus variants that are currently in the UK,” said Peter Horby, a professor of emerging infectious diseases at Oxford University and chair of NERVTAG.
“There is a hint that it has a higher propensity to infect children,” said Neil Ferguson, a professor and infectious disease epidemiologist at Imperial College London and also a member of NERVTAG.
“We haven’t established any sort of causality on that, but we can see it in the data,” Ferguson said. “We will need to gather more data to see how it behaves going forward.” ■