A human-transmissible mutation of the coronavirus in mink in Denmark, considered problematic because it could potentially threaten the effectiveness of a future vaccine, is “Most likely extinct”, the Danish health ministry said Thursday (November 19th).
The Danish infectious diseases agency announced on November 5 that it had detected a mutant virus, called “Cluster 5”, attributed to mink in 214 people, which had led to the slaughter of millions of mink, a measure that has triggered a political crisis in Denmark.
“No other case of the mutation from mink, Cluster 5, has been detected since September 15, which is why the Institute in charge of infectious diseases [SSI] believes that this mutation is very probably extinct “, the Danish health ministry wrote in a statement.
Relaxation of restrictive measures
An investigation showed that before Social Democratic Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen ordered the culling of 17 million mink, which the owners of the breeding farms said marked the death of their business, her services the warned against the illegality of this decision. The Danish opposition is now calling for the resignation of Mette Frederiksen following that of her agriculture minister, Mogens Jensen. The premier, who issued a public apology, maintains that her decision to slaughter all the contaminated mink was fair and was based on analysis by health authorities.
In the absence of new contaminations, the health ministry also announced on Thursday an easing of the restriction measures imposed on mink farmers two weeks ago.