Florence, South Carolina 2021-10-20 22:20:52 –
(NEXSTAR) – As of late September, a new branch of the COVID-19 delta variant accounted for about 6% of UK cases, according to UK Health Security Agency officials.
The subvariant known as AY.4.2 is not yet a variant of concern (VOC) or variant of interest (VOI), but authorities say the case October 15 Report..
“It has been pointed out that the Delta subline, newly designated as AY.4.2, is expanding in the UK,” the UK Health and Safety Agency wrote in its report. “This is now a signal for monitoring and evaluation.”
Researchers have confirmed that AY.4.2 contains two spike mutations (A222V and Y145H) that have already been observed in other variants. However, none of these mutations were observed in the mutants considered or of concern for VOCs.
Francois Balloux, a professor at the UCL Genetics Institute in London, commented on the mutation in the United Kingdom. Science Media Center The presence of both A222V and Y145H does not necessarily mean that AY.4.2 is more contagious than other variants, but he says it is possible.
“Both mutations A priori It’s a clear candidate for increasing the transmission of the virus, but I’ve learned that mutations can have different and sometimes unexpected effects in different strains, “Barrow said on Tuesday.
Burrowks further noted on Twitter that AY.4.2 may actually be “essentially more contagious,” citing the trajectory of the increase in cases and the region of the United Kingdom where cases were observed. (Infectious diseases do not seem to be “regionally specific,” he said.
Outside the United Kingdom and Denmark, cases of AY.4.2 appear to be rare at present, but cases have been reportedly observed in the United States, Canada and Israel.
Still, concerns are rising when US Commissioner of Food and Drugs Scott Gottlieb tweeted on Sunday. “Urgent research” It is necessary to determine the infectivity of subvariants and the potential resistance to vaccines.
“This isn’t a source of immediate concern, but it reminds us that we need a robust system to identify and characterize new variants.” Gottlieb has been added.. “This needs to be a coordinated global priority for COVID, just as similar international efforts have become the standard practice for influenza.”
Regarding the announcement of the results of the British Health and Security Agency’s findings, the Prime Minister’s representative said the government was “very carefully watching” the numbers.
“There is no evidence [to suggest increased transmissibility]But, as you can imagine, we are closely monitoring it and do not hesitate to take action when necessary, “said the representative. Sky news..
It is unclear if the AY.4.2 subvariant is more contagious, but UK health officials are investigating the possibility of infectious and antigenic escape properties.
Balloux, for example, does not yet believe that AY.4.2 is an “obvious” candidate for promotion to VOCs.
“The emergence of yet another infectious strain would not be optimal,” he told the Science Media Center. “But this is not comparable to the emergence of alpha and delta, which were far more contagious (more than 50%) than any of the strains in circulation at the time. Here, they have no impact comparable to a pandemic. We are dealing with a slight increase in infectivity that may occur. “
New COVID-19 subvariant spreading in England: Here’s what we know Source link New COVID-19 subvariant spreading in England: Here’s what we know