Developed a new strain of Covid that kills 80% of the population
Researchers at Boston University say they have developed
a new COVID strain that has an 80% kill rate following
a series of similar experiments first thought to have started the
global pandemic that began in China.
The variant, a combination of omicron and the original virus
in Wuhan, killed 80% of the mice infected with it, the university
aid. When mice were only exposed to omicron, they experienced
mild symptoms. The research was conducted by a team of scientists
from Florida and Boston at the school's National Emerging Infectious
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.
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.
In a statement, the university stressed that the replicated strain
was less dangerous than the original strain.
"First, this research is not gain-of-function research, meaning
it did not amplify the Washington state SARS-COV-2 virus strain
or make it more dangerous. In fact, this research made the virus
replicate less dangerous," the statement read. "Secondly, the
research was reviewed and approved by the Institutional Biosafety
Committee (IBC), which consists of scientists as well as local
community members. The Boston Public Health Commission also
approved the research. Furthermore, this research mirrors and
reinforces the findings of other, similar research performed by other
organizations, including the FDA. Ultimately, this research will
provide a public benefit by leading to better, targeted therapeutic
interventions to help fight against future pandemics."
COVID-19 was first believed to have come from a wet market in
Wuhan, though many believe the virus was engineered at the Wuhan
Institute of Virology. The World Health Organization continues
to face criticism for its handling of the crisis in its early, most
The omicron variant is highly transmissible, even in those who are
fully vaccinated. The spike protein is responsible for rates
of infectivity, according to researchers, other changes to the virus
structure determine its deadliness.