Estimated transmissibility and impact of SARS-CoV-2 lineage B.1.1.7 in England

Nicholas G. Davies*, Sam Abbott, Rosanna C. Barnard, Christopher I. Jarvis, Adam J. Kucharski, James D. Munday, Carl A. B. Pearson, Timothy W. Russell, Damien C. Tully, Alex D. Washburne, Tom Wenseleers, Amy Gimma, William Waites, Kerry L. M. Wong, Kevin van Zandvoort, Justin D. Silverman, CMMID COVID-19 Working Group, The COVID-19 Genomics UK (COG-UK) consortium, Karla Diaz-Ordaz, Ruth KeoghRosalind M. Eggo, Sebastian Funk, Mark Jit, Katherine E. Atkins, W. John Edmunds, Matthew Bashton, Darren Smith, Greg Young, Andrew Nelson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

A severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) variant, VOC 202012/01 (lineage B.1.1.7), emerged in southeast England in September 2020 and is rapidly spreading toward fixation. Using a variety of statistical and dynamic modeling approaches, we estimate that this variant has a 43 to 90% (range of 95% credible intervals, 38 to 130%) higher reproduction number than preexisting variants. A fitted two-strain dynamic transmission model shows that VOC 202012/01 will lead to large resurgences of COVID-19 cases. Without stringent control measures, including limited closure of educational institutions and a greatly accelerated vaccine rollout, COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths across England in the first 6 months of 2021 were projected to exceed those in 2020. VOC 202012/01 has spread globally and exhibits a similar transmission increase (59 to 74%) in Denmark, Switzerland, and the United States.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbereabg3055
Number of pages16
JournalScience
Volume372
Issue number6538
Early online date3 Mar 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 9 Apr 2021

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