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HE SARS-COV-2 IS MUTATING, SAY SCIENTISTS

Focus: Science and Technology

Why in news?

  • Senior scientists at Australia’s national science agency, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), have said the virus dubbed SARS-CoV-2 is mutating, after analysing the 115 published genome sequences from the current COVID-19 outbreak.
  • Some of these ‘errors’ in the virus known as ‘mutations’ may be significant for the development and evaluation of new diagnostics, drugs and vaccines

Mutation

  • A Mutation occurs when a DNA gene is damaged or changed in such a way as to alter the genetic message carried by that gene.
  • A Mutagen is an agent of substance that can bring about a permanent alteration to the physical composition of a DNA gene such that the genetic message is changed.
What is a mutation? a change in the underlying DNA code that causes the gene to not function properly 
Substitution: part of the DNA 
swapped 
for different DNA 
Addition: Excess DNA is 
added 
Deletion: Part of the DNA is 
removed 
Types of 
Mutations 
Why does 
this matter? 
Changing DNA changes 
the proteins produced 
This can be benign but 
can also cause diseases 
The red indicates a change in the DNA. This is a mutation.
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July 2022
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