New Texas COVID-19 variant resistant to antibodies, researchers say

Coronavirus

A 3-D rendering of the coronavirus (Getty Images).

COLLEGE STATION, Texas (KXAN) — Texas A&M University researchers have identified a new COVID-19 variant that originated in the state.

Scientists at the Texas A&M Global Health Research Complex (GHRC) identified the variant — called BV-1 after Brazos Valley, where it originated — from a saliva sample taken from a student as a part of an ongoing testing program. Researchers believe it’s related to the United Kingdom variant.

The student with the confirmed case showed mild flu-like symptoms for nearly a month, suggesting this new variant may cause a longer than normal infection in young adults. Although only one mild case has been confirmed, researchers are worried that the variant shows resistance to antibodies.

“We do not at present know the full significance of this variant, but it has a combination of mutations similar to other internationally notifiable variants of concern,” GHRC Chief Virologist Ben Neuman said in a press release. “This variant combines genetic markers separately associated with rapid spread, severe disease and high resistance to neutralizing antibodies.”

There have been five COVID-19 variants confirmed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, but researchers across the world have identified thousands.

According to the CDC, the UK variant is now the most common strain in the United States.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Don't Miss

More Don't Miss

Coronavirus News

More Coronavirus

Trending Stories

Your Local Election HQ

More Election

Local Sports

Small Springs, Big Fish: Billy Schrauth garnering blue-chip interest

Bay Port and Notre Dame advance to boys soccer spring sectional semifinals

De Pere Girls Cross Country

Northeast Wisconsin natives Dietzen, Heim get shot as undrafted free agents

De Pere football looks to finish undefeated regular season

Timber Rattlers open with win over Beloit, fans return to Fox Cities Stadium