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Scientists develop new Covid strain with 80 pc kill rate in mice

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Washington: Scientists at Boston University has developed a new Covid-19 strain which resulted in an 80 per cent kill rate in mice.

The variant, a combination of Omicron and the original virus in Wuhan, killed 80 per cent of the mice infected with it, the university said. When mice were only exposed to Omicron, they experienced mild symptoms, the New York Post said.

A team of scientists from Florida and Boston at the school’s National Emerging Infectious Diseases Laboratories conducted the research.

They extracted the spike protein from Omicron and attached it with the strain first detected at the onset of the pandemic that began in Wuhan, China. They then documented how the mice reacted to the hybrid strain, according to the New York Post report.

“In…mice, while Omicron causes mild, non-fatal infection, the Omicron S-carrying virus inflicts severe disease with a mortality rate of 80 percent,” they wrote in a research paper.

The new strain has five times more infectious virus particles than the Omicron variant, researchers said.

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