Delta variant, cases quadrupled in Italy: what do we know from symptoms to vaccines

The Delta variant is advancing in Italy, with infections passing from 4.2% of the total infections in May to 16.8% in June. But two doses of the vaccine still provide strong protection against the mutant. According to a circular from the Ministry of Health, the variant is 40-60% more transmissible than Alpha and may be associated with a higher risk of hospitalization. At the level of symptoms, the Indian variant seems to have more impact on the body. Coughs, colds, headaches and sore throats, fever, body aches, diarrhea, fatigue and exhaustion – the first signs of coronavirus in people – are usually stronger. And consequently the healing times are also affected. Read also VACCINATION “There is evidence – we read in the circular of the Ministry of Health – that those who have received only the first dose of a vaccination that involves the administration of two doses for the completion of the anti-Covid vaccination cycle, are less protected against ‘infection with the Delta variant versus infection with other variants, regardless of the type of vaccine administered “. “The completion of the vaccination cycle – continues the circular – instead provides protection against the Delta variant almost equivalent to that observed against the Alpha variant”. “It is important to progress as fast as possible with the vaccination campaign. A single dose of vaccine does not cover adequately, the vaccination cycle must be completed to be able to obtain protection from both serious and lethal pathology”, says Professor Franco Locatelli, coordinator of the CTS and president of the Superior Health Council. RED ZONE RISK According to Locatelli, the prospect of having to close where the Delta variant is particularly widespread is concrete. “Right now the country is a white zone but woe to let our guard down: we are in a more favorable situation and we can now evaluate different numbers than in the past. But the problem is not overcome,” he said. Any closures fall within the “flexibility of the system, the same that we adopted for example for the areas of Umbria when there was the Brazilian variant”. “It is important to work more intensively on tracing and genotyping and sequencing approaches because only in this way will we be able to accurately intercept any signals of important diffusion of the Indian variant”. In the battle against covid and in particular against the Delta variant. “You need to know how to read the events moment by moment. At this moment we believe that the measures we have taken are sufficient. In particular, a few days ago we restored the quarantine for Great Britain, I renewed the expiring ordinance for the ‘India with the entry ban. But there is no doubt that we must continue to monitor step by step “, said Health Minister Roberto Speranza for his part. INDIAN VARIANT, THE ‘CARD’ Discovered for the first time in October in Maharashtra, a state of central-western India, known for the capital Mumbai, the variant is identified as B.1.617. Its main feature is that it has two already known mutations (E484Q and L452R), a union that would be responsible for the dramatic wave that is upsetting India. The mutation identified as L452R corresponds to a modification also identified in the Californian variant (B.1.427) that affects the spike protein and could increase the contagiousness of the coronavirus. The E484Q mutation could instead affect the ability to ‘dribble’ the immune response: therefore, it could lead the coronavirus to be more resistant to antibodies developed after an infection or to circumvent, at least partially, the effectiveness of the vaccine.

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