The new coronavirus variant in the UK is indeed more transmissible, a new study suggests. The new findings are a warning sign that might close down schools and universities.

Iran Press/Europe: A team of British scientists released a worrying study on Wednesday of the new coronavirus variant sweeping the United Kingdom. They warned that the variant is so contagious that new control measures, including closing down schools and universities, might be necessary. Even that may not be enough, they noted, saying, “It may be necessary to greatly accelerate vaccine rollout.”

Nicholas Davies, the lead author of the study, said that the model should also serve as a warning to other countries where the variant may have already spread, The New York Times reported.

“The preliminary findings are pretty convincing that more rapid vaccination is going to be a really important thing for any country that has to deal with this or similar variants,” Dr. Davies, an epidemiologist at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, said in an interview.

The study, released by the Center for Mathematical Modeling of Infectious Diseases at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, has not yet undergone review by a scientific journal. The study compares a series of models as predictors of data on infections, hospitalizations and other variables; other researchers are studying the variant in laboratory experiments to determine if it is biologically distinct.

The study found no evidence that the variant was more deadly than others. But the researchers estimated that it was 56 percent more contagious. On Monday, the British government released an initial estimate of 70 percent.

The coronavirus pandemic has sickened more than 79,359,300 people, according to official counts. As of Friday morning, at least 1,741,700 people have died, and the virus has been detected in nearly every country.

In the US, the number of COVID daily infections has surged past 193,000 in the last 24 hours and the total cases of COVID-19 have exceeded 19 million there.


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