Japan detects new COVID-19 mutation in travelers arriving from Brazil

Japan detects new COVID-19 mutation in travelers arriving from Brazil


Japan has detected yet another new variant of COVID-19, one that appears to have arrived with travelers from Brazil, its Health Ministry said Sunday.

The mutation was detected in four people who arrived at Tokyo’s Haneda airport on Jan. 2 after traveling from Brazil’s Amazonas state, including a man having breathing difficulties and another with a fever, officials said.

The newest variant appears to be different from the highly infections strains being blamed for an explosion in cases in Britain and South Africa, the ministry said.

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“At the moment, there is no proof showing the new variant found in those from Brazil is high in infectiousness,” Takaji Wakita, head of the National Institute of Infectious Diseases, told a health ministry briefing.

Studies are already underway into the efficacy of vaccines against the new variant, the ministry said.

Japan has already declared a state of emergency for Tokyo and three prefectures neighboring the capital after an explosion of cases.

The

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