A new type of Coronavirus – NeoCoV - has reportedly been detected in South Africa.
According to a group of Chinese scientists from Wuhan, the new variant has a potentially high death and infection rate and is related to the Middle East respiratory syndrome MERS-COV.
As per a Sputnik report, NeoCoV was found in the bat population in South Africa which spread among animals.
A new study recently claimed that one mutation could lead to the virus being passed from animals to humans. It found that NeoCoV and its close relative PDF-2180-CoV have the ability to use some types of bat Angiotensin-converting enzyme2 (ACE2) and human ACE2 to enter the body. The researchers have insisted that one mutation could result in the virus getting transmitted to human cells.
The revelation was made by the scientists from the Wuhan University and Institute of Biophysics of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
The study however is yet to be peer-reviews and was released in a preprint on bioRxiv.
The scientists said that NeoCoV carries with it the potentially combined high mortality rate of MERS-CoV (where one in three infected people die on average) and the high transmission rate of the current SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus