Scientists in Malaysia have discovered a new strain of coronavirus which is ten times more infectious than the original Wuhan strain.
Malaysia's Director General of Health Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah in a Facebook post said that the Malaysian Institute for Medical Research discovered the D614G mutation in four cases from two Covid-19 clusters in the country.
According to Dr Abdullah: "It's found to be 10 times more infectious and is easily spread by an individual' super spreader'," reported The Straits Times.
Dr Abdullah in his Facebook post on Sunday urged that the discovery of the new strain indicated that people needed to be more aware, and continue practising social distancing, personal hygiene and wearing masks.
He also said the strain was found in preliminary tests and that follow-up tests would be conducted on other cases including the index cases of both clusters.
He added that the D614G mutation was discovered by scientists in July 2020, and could render existing vaccine research incomplete or ineffective against the new strain.
Nevertheless he noted that the swift action by Malaysia's public health authorities has controlled the virus' spread from the affected clusters.
Malaysia reported 26 new cases on Saturday, bringing the total number of infections so far to 9,175. No new fatalities were reported, keeping the death toll at 125.