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The Covid-19 variants are still highly transmissible between mammals, according to a study. Scientists believe bats first transmitted SARS-CoV-2 to humans in December 2019, and the virus has since evolved into several variants such as Delta and Omicron.

The findings, published in the journal Royal Society Open Science, show how the viral spike proteins in several SARS-CoV-2 variants interact with the host cell receptors known as ACE2 in both humans and various bats of genus Rhinolophus.

"We were hoping to see really cool adaptive evolution happening as the virus got more used to humans and less used to bats, but we actually saw that there wasn’t a whole lot of change," said Associate Professor Gregory Babbitt from RIT.

"Because this binding site has not evolved very much, there’s really not much stopping it from transmitting from humans to bats," Babbit said in a statement.

Meanwhile, a US-based scientist, who worked at a controversial research lab in China's Wuhan, has said that COVID-19 was a "man-made virus" that leaked from the facility.

COVID was leaked from Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV), a state-run and funded research facility, two years ago, the New York Post reported.

India Covid update

India saw a single day rise of 226 coronavirus infections, while active cases declined to 4,434, according to the Union health ministry data updated on Monday.

The case tally stood at 4.46 crore ( 4,46,73,618). The death toll climbed to 5,30,630 with two fatalities reconciled by Kerala, the data updated at 8 am said.

The active cases comprise 0.01 per cent of the total infections, while the national COVID-19 recovery rate increased to 98.80 per cent, according to the health ministry website.

 

 

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