Within-Host and Between-Host Evolution in SARS-CoV-2-New Variant's Source.

Karin Moelling


Some of the newly emerging corona viral variants show high numbers of mutations. This is unexpected for a virus with a low mutation rate due to an inherent proof-reading system. Could such a variant arise under very special conditions occurring in a host where the virus replicates and mutates in a rather unlimited fashion, such as in immune compromised patients? The virus was shown to replicate in an immunosuppressed cancer patient for more than 105 days and might be a source of new variants. These patients are asymptomatic and the virus may therefore escape detection and attention and be high-risk. Similarly, HIV-infected individuals may be immunocompromised and support coronavirus replication with increased mutation rates. The patients may promote "within-host evolution". Some of the viruses present in such a highly mutagenic swarm or quasispecies within one patient may become founders and cause a pandemic by further "between-host evolution". B.1.1.7 with 23 mutations may be such a case. Immunosuppressed patients can be identified and treated by the synthetic antibody cocktails as passive immunization and kept under control. Immunosuppressed patients can be easily identified and supervised by healthcare workers-once they beco...Continue Reading


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