While the entire world is still grappling with the noxious coronavirus, a new swine flu type virus has been discovered in China which possesses the potential of triggering a pandemic, akin to the current virus. According to the study published in the science journal in the US, the virus named ‘G4’ is genetically descended from the H1NI strain.
The authors and scientists at Chinese universities and China’s Center for Disease Control and Prevention said that the virus contains all the essential hallmarks of being adapted to infect humans.
G4 virus is labeled to be extremely infectious; it replicates in human cells and causes more severe symptoms in ferrets than any other virus. It has further been found out that any kind of immunity that humans gain from the exposure to seasonal flu does not give any protection from G4.
From 2011 to 2018, researchers took 30,000 nasal swabs from pigs in slaughterhouses in 10 Chinese provinces, thus isolating 179 swine flu viruses; the majority was of a new kind that has been dominating in pigs since 2016.
Around 4.4% of the population has already been exposed to the virus, indicating that the virus has been passed on to humans from animals. However, there is still no evidence of whether the virus can float from humans to humans.