A picture from a team at a children's hospital in Rome, Italy shows that compared with the new coronavirus pneumonia (COVID-19) variant virus Delta and Omicron, the latter has more spike protein mutations.
These variations are diverse, and most of them are located in areas that interact with human cells.
Italy's "Evening Post" (Corriere della Sera) quoted researchers on the 27th as saying that mutation does not necessarily mean more dangerous, but the virus further adapts to the human body through mutation and produces one more mutant strain.
The researchers said that more other studies will tell people whether this adaptation is neutral, less dangerous, or has more information.
↓The picture shows the comparison of the mutation of the spike protein of the Delta mutant virus strain (left) and the Omicron mutant virus strain.
The image was created by the Multi-Mode Laboratory of Hospital Pediátrico Infant Jesus in Rome, Italy.
Omicron, ecco la prima foto della variante scattata al Bambino Gesù https://t.co/AYuqYCGZZm pic.twitter.com/LdRdixAXjE
— Corriere della Sera (@Corriere) November 27, 2021
In the picture, you can see Delta on the left and Omicron's image on the right.
The "dots" marked in different colors in the picture are the spike protein of the virus, and the red part is the part with the most variation.
Delta has 18 mutated amino acid residues, while Omicron has 43.
Amino acid is the basic unit of protein.
Amino acids contain amine and carboxyl groups, which are linked to the side chains (residues) of each specific amino acid molecule.
There are many types of amino acids, and differences in residues will cause amino acids to vary and have unique characteristics.
On November 27, local time, after laboratory sequencing, Italy confirmed the country's first case of Omicron infection.
The “Evening Post” reported on the 27th that the patient lived in Campania in southern Italy and had returned from a trip to Mozambique. He had tested positive for the virus and was quarantined. He is currently in good health.
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Zhong Nanshan, an academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, said on the 27th that there is not much knowledge about the variant virus, but this virus carries a large number of mutations, which poses more challenges to epidemic prevention.