The mystery of Europe's less deadly second coronavirus wave

Several new studies offer hopeful theories that the virus currently circulating around Europe and Asia, where new cases have also not led to a spike in deaths, is not as potent as the first wave.

One, by Britain’s Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine , looks at mortality rates in the U.K. where the strategy has been inconsistent from the beginning, but the case fatality rate there has fallen from 18 percent in April to around 1 percent in late August. Statistician Jason Oke said that the reason is not that treatment has been found, it’s that the virus isn’t the same. “This doesn’t seem to be the same disease or as lethal as it was earlier on when we saw huge numbers of people dying,” he said.

French epidemiologist Laurent Toubiana told BFM-TV that he was baffled by this new wave. “The virus is circulating, but an epidemic without patients, I don’t understand what it is,” he said, noting there was no major uptick in hospitalizations despite France’s numbers soaring. “For the moment, there is no major sign of crisis, for the moment there is no rebound.”