The first case of mutation of the SarsCoV2 virus in a newborn infected in utero was reported in Sweden.
This was reported by the Swedish University of Malmo in the British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.
The mother had been hospitalized for a suspicion of Covid-19, after reporting severe abdominal pain.
Doctors noted that the fetus had a very low heart rate, likely a sign of a low oxygen supply.
Hence the decision to proceed with an emergency caesarean section.
The blood tests then confirmed that the newborn had received little oxygen and the throat swab showed that the mother and child were both sick with Covid-19.
Sequencing of the virus then showed that the baby had been infected in utero.
"The viral genome was the same in mother and child," the researchers note, and "The fact that the baby was isolated from the mother immediately after the cesarean and was not in contact with other family members at the time of the tests, confirms. that the infection occurred before the birth ".
The surprising thing is that a new genetic sequencing performed a few days after delivery showed that the baby's virus contained some mutations compared to the mother's one.
"As far as we know this is the first case of coronavirus genetic change in the context of mother-to-fetus transmission before birth," note the authors of the research.
The murìtation, indicated with the initials A107G, took place only 5 days after the birth.
According to a first hypothesis, the mutation could have been induced by the contact of the baby with the environment outside the maternal uterus.
The researchers also found that half of the placenta tissue was damaged - there was widespread inflammation and coronavirus proteins were detected on the outer and inner side of the placenta.
The mother recovered from Covid 4 days after giving birth, while the baby needed neonatal care having been born at 34 / th weeks.
However, she developed antibodies to the virus without severe symptoms after giving birth.