Sunday, July 18, 2021

US’ Centers for Disease Control calls coronavirus Delta variant a ‘variant of concern’

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now called the Delta variant of the novel coronavirus, also known as B.1.617.2, a “variant of concern”.
According to the agency, there is ‘mounting evidence’ that the Delta variant, which was first reported in India, shows increased transmissibility, potential reduction in neutralization by some monoclonal antibody treatments under emergency authorization, and potential reduction in neutralization from sera after vaccination in lab tests.Earlier, the CDC had considered the Delta variant to be a variant of interest. It also underscores delta to be 50 percent faster than the Alpha variant, thus making it two times faster than the original Covid-19 strain.

The severity of the Delta strain is far more severe than any other variant, including a 2.5 times higher risk of hospitalization than the Alpha variant found in the UK first. Overall the strain found in India increases the risk of hospitalization by four folds as compared to the original.

The variant of concern designation is given to strains of the virus that scientists believe are more transmissible or can cause more severe disease. Vaccines, treatments, and tests that detect the virus may also be less effective against a variant of concern.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) classified the Delta variant as a variant of concern on May 10. A study on the Delta variant in Scotland published on Monday found that it was associated with about double the risk of hospitalization compared with the Alpha variant, B.1.1.7, that was first identified in the UK.

As America bounces back to life and eases restrictions, experts are flagging concern as some say that the COVID-19 delta variant can “take us back to square one” if not careful.

Meanwhile, US President Joe Biden on Monday (local time) urged Americans who have not yet gotten vaccinated against the coronavirus to do so as soon as possible, pointing that the country has lost nearly 600,000 lives lost domestically from the infection.

On Tuesday (local), America has crossed the milestone of 60 lakh coronavirus deaths.

Source: ETHealthWorld

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