Wednesday, February 28

WHO confirms a variant of Covid-19 that combines omicron and delta

The World Health Organization (WHO) has not yet observed that the variant of COVID-19 that combines omicron and delta is more serious than these two lineages separately.

“We are aware of this recombination. It is a combination of delta AY.4 and omicron BA.1. It has been detected in France, the Netherlands and Denmark, but at very low levels,” reported Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove, WHO’s leading epidemiologist, at a press conference this Wednesday from Geneva (Switzerland).

The expert has acknowledged that “this recombination it was expected“; however, he has clarified that at the moment “no change in epidemiology or severity” has been detected. “But there are many studies underway,” he added.

A study published this week by el Pasteur Institute (France) has found the first strong evidence for the existence of this recombinant variant, which was identified in various regions of France and has been circulating since the beginning of January 2022. In particular, viral genomes with a similar profile have also been identified in Denmark and the Netherlands. Low.

‘Deltacron’, the colloquial term

Until now, the WHO had said that ‘Deltacron‘, the colloquial term with which this variant was called from some sectors, was the result of contamination during the sequencing process.

“What we believe is that it is the result of contamination that has occurred during the sequencing process. That said, one can become infected with different strains of SARS-CoV-2. What you can do to minimize your exposure to both SARS-CoV -2 like the flu, it will benefit you,” he said then Van Kerkhove.

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Apart from this new variant, the director general of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesushas shown concern because “several countries are drastically reducing diagnostic tests” on COVID-19.

“This inhibits our ability to see where the virus is, how it is spreading and evolving. Testing remains a vital tool in our fight against the pandemic, as part of a comprehensive strategy,” he insisted.

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In this regard, he warned that “many countries in Asia and the Pacific face a increase in cases and deaths by COVID-19″. “The virus continues to evolve, and we continue to face great obstacles to distribute vaccines, tests and treatments in all the places where they are needed”, he pointed out.

On the other hand, Tedros has recalled that this Friday, March 11, marks two years since the pandemic was declared. “Two years later, more than 6 million people have died. Although reported COVID-19 cases and deaths are declining around the world, and several countries have lifted restrictions, the pandemic is far from over, and it will not end anywhere until it ends everywhere.”

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