Scientists have found new types of coronaviruses in bats
Scientists from the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Shandong University have conducted research on the evolutionary origins of SARS-CoV-2 and similar viruses. The results of the work were published in the journal Cell .
A team of scientists studied samples of saliva and waste products from 342 bats, which were collected from May 2019 to November 2020. As a result, 24 genomes of the coronavirus were discovered, four of which were similar to the SARS-CoV-2 that caused the pandemic.
At the same time, the differences in one of the samples were only in the spike protein, which is used by the virus to attach to the host cell wall and form its “crown”.
“Bats are known as an excellent natural reservoir for various pathogens that cause serious diseases in humans and are associated with the spread of Hendra virus, Marburg virus, Ebola virus and, above all, coronaviruses,” the researchers noted.
Scientists have concluded that SARS-CoV-2-related viruses continue to circulate in bat populations, and in some regions this can occur quite often.
Earlier it became known that 13,510 new cases of coronavirus infection were detected in Russia per day. This is the maximum value over the past six months.