Textile and jute minister Golam Dastagir Gazi is not infected with COVID-19 but with 229E — a sub group of coronavirus — that causes common cold symptoms.
Meerjady Sabrina Flora, director of Institute of Epidemiology Disease Control and Research, said while addressing a news briefing at her office on Thursday.
The minister is undergoing treatment at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University.
Meerjady said the 229E could be contracted from winter vegetables.
Human coronavirus 229E is one of seven variants of coronavirus. It is one of the first coronavirus strains being described as alpha coronavirus. It is linked to common cold symptoms in adults.
Meerjady said so far none was found infected with COVID-19 in Bangladesh.
The HCoV-229E is associated with a range of respiratory symptoms, ranging from the common cold to high-morbidity outcomes such as pneumonia and bronchiolitis.
‘The strain is common in Bangladesh and people suffering from common cold are frequently infected with 229E. Such patients do not need isolation or quarantine. This is a very common virus,’ said Meerjady.
The minister recently returned to Dhaka after taking respiratory treatment from Singapore.
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