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Open Access
  • © Marius Surleac
  • , et al.
  • 2022

Short Communication:Evidence of Novel SARS-CoV-2 Variants Circulation in Romania

  • Marius Surleac 1
  • Corina Casangiu 2
  • Leontina Banica 3
  • Petre Milu 4
  • Dragos Florea 4
  • Oana Sandulescu 4
  • Anca Streinu-Cercel 4
  • Ovidiu Vlaicu 3
  • Andreea Tudor 3
  • Robert Hohan 3
  • Simona Paraschiv 3
  • Dan Otelea 3
  • 1 - Research Institute of the University of Bucharest - Bucharest Romania
  • 2 - Marie Curie Emergency Clinical Hospital - Bucharest Romania
  • 3 - National Institute for Infectious Diseases - Bucharest Romania
  • 4 - University of Medicine and Pharmacy - Bucharest Romania

Abstract

New SARS-CoV-2 variants are constantly emerging and putting a strain on public health systems by spreading faster and potentially evading immune protection through vaccination. One of these strains is the B.1.1.7 variant that has initially been described in the United Kingdom and has subsequently spread to several countries. Monitoring the amplification of the S gene—a major hotspot for molecular evolution—by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) allows rapidly screening for such variants. This report describes the detection of sequence variants in Romania by using this strategy followed by next-generation sequencing of the entire genome for confirmation and further characterization. One B.1.1.7 and three B.1.258 sequences were confirmed. Each of these strains presented additional mutations with possible impact on the replicative capacity. Public health strategies should be devised to ensure molecular monitoring of SARS-CoV-2 evolution during the pandemic and allow adequate and rapid reaction.


 


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