New COVID-19 mutation may be able to bypass mask-wearing, hand-washing

A more contagious strain of coronavirus may have appeared, according to a new study.

In research published on Wednesday, scientists identified a new COVID-19 mutation that seems to have adapted to more easily spread among people, Washington Post reports.

The new strain accounted for 99.9 percent of cases in the second wave of the outbreak in Houston, Texas.

The evolved strain, referred to as the D614G mutation, isn’t more deadly, but it does have higher loads of virus, which implies it is more contagious, the study explained.

The paper has not been peer reviewed.

According to David Morens, a virologist from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, the study could have implications for society’s ability to manage and control the virus which has caused the death of over 200,000 Americans this year.

Morens even said that the virus could have evolved to resist common efforts at dodging the virus, such as washing hands or wearing masks.

“Wearing masks, washing our hands, all those things are barriers to transmissibility, or contagion, but as the virus becomes more contagious, it statistically is better at getting around those barriers,” he told the outlet.

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