The mutation, previously seen in other parts of the world and called D614G, was found in at least three of 45 cases in a cluster that started from a restaurant owner returning from India and violating his home quarantine of 14 days. The man has since been sentenced to five months in prison and a fine. The strain was also found in another group involving people returning from the Philippines.
CoronavirusSaid that a new mutation could accelerate the spread of
The strain could mean that existing vaccine studies may be incomplete or ineffective against the mutation, said chief health officer Noor Hisham Abdullah.
The mutation has become the predominant variant in Europe and the United States, with the World Health Organization saying there is no evidence that the strain leads to more serious disease. Aarticle published in Cell Press said that the mutation is unlikely to have a major impact on the effectiveness of vaccines under development.
“People should be wary and take more precautions as this strain has now been found in Malaysia,” Noor Hisham wrote in a Facebook post on Sunday. “The cooperation of the population is essential so that we can together break the chain of infection of any mutation.”
While Malaysia has largely succeeded in preventing a resurgence of the virus seen elsewhere in the world, the number of new cases found in the country has increased. The country confirmed 26 new cases on Saturday, the most since July 28, and added 25 cases on Sunday.
– With the help of Rachel Chang
(Updates with more context in the fourth paragraph.)