Is diffusion of SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern associated with different symptoms?

      Although the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) seems to be slowing down in many countries as consequence of widespread vaccination, the gradual accumulation of non-synonymous mutations within the genome of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has lead to appearance of variants of concern (VOCs), characterized by greater infectivity and/or potential of immune evasion especially from anti-SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibodies elicited after COVID-19 vaccination.
      • Abdool Karim S.S.
      • de Oliveira T.
      New SARS-CoV-2 variants - clinical, public health, and vaccine implications.
      In a recent report, Fantini et al. have proposed an interesting health approach for anticipating COVID-19 outbreaks, based on an index of transmissibility (T-index), calculated from parameters of coronavirus binding to host cells.
      • Fantini J.
      • Yahi N.
      • Azzaz F.
      • Chahinian H.
      Structural dynamics of SARS-CoV-2 variants: a health monitoring strategy for anticipating COVID-19 outbreaks.
      Although this strategy seems indeed promising, previous evidence has been garnered that easier and more accessible tools such infodemiology, which relies on investigating the volume of Web searches for specific COVID-19 symptoms, may be effective in anticipating local COVID-19 epidemiological trends,
      • Lippi G.
      • Mattiuzzi C.
      • Cervellin G.
      Google search volume predicts the emergence of COVID-19 outbreaks.
      ,
      • Henry B.M.
      • Szergyuk I.
      • Santos de Oliveira M.H.
      • Lippi G.
      • Juszczyk G.
      • Mikos M.
      Utility of google trends in anticipating COVID-19 outbreaks in Poland.
      provided that symptoms caused by the emerging VOCs remain constant over time.

      Keywords

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        New SARS-CoV-2 variants - clinical, public health, and vaccine implications.
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        Structural dynamics of SARS-CoV-2 variants: a health monitoring strategy for anticipating COVID-19 outbreaks.
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