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Branco Weiss Fellows show the origin and transmission chains of COVID-19 in the UK

19.01.2021 13:50

A team of scientists, led by researchers from the Universities of Oxford and Edinburgh and including Branco Weiss Fellows Tetyana Vasylyeva and Moritz Kraemer, has analyzed the first wave of the COVID-19 outbreak in the UK and produced the most fine-scaled and comprehensive genomic analysis of transmission of any epidemic to date.

Their analysis draws on more than 50,000 virus genome sequences – 26,000 of which were gathered through the COVID-19 Genomics UK (COG-UK) consortium – offering a never-before-seen level of insight into the origins and behavior of transmission chains since the start of the pandemic.

The full analysis, published recently in Science, reveals that the virus was introduced to the UK well over a thousand times in early 2020 and that the rate and source of introduction changed very quickly. During this time the highest number of transmission chains were introduced from Spain (33 %), France (29 %), and then Italy (12 %) – with China accounting for only 0.4 % of imports. The study shows how the UK national lockdown affected individual transmission chains.

Read the news on Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News

Read the paper in Science