• Fri. Oct 22nd, 2021

Indian variant, WHO: “It is more transmissible”

Byeditorial

May 26, 2021

The Indian variant of the coronavirus (B.1.617) is more transmissible. An “increased transmissibility” of the mutant is reported by the World Health Organization, which in its latest weekly report focuses on the updates that have emerged on the characteristics of transmissibility, severity of the disease, risk of reinfection, ability to diagnose and efficacy of vaccines for variants of the pandemic coronavirus that cause concern, the so-called Vocs (Variants of concern). “New evidence is emerging – the report reads – that the secondary attack rates for variant B.1.617.2, reported in the UK from 29 March to 28 April 2021, were higher than those of B.1.1.7” , the English variant, “between travelers and non-travelers”. The secondary attack rate, the WHO recalls, is a parameter that measures “the proportion of positive tests recorded among contacts of confirmed or probable cases of variant infection”. The effect of the Indian variant on the severity of Covid-19 and on the risk of reinfection is still being investigated – reports the WHO – even if a modest reduction in the neutralizing activity of antibodies to the B mutant is “possible. 1.617.1. At the moment, however, there are no reports relating to the impact of the Indian variant on the ability to diagnose Sars-CoV-2 infection. As for the effectiveness of the anti-Covid vaccines currently available, for the Indian variant B.1.617.2 WHO defines protection against the disease as “probable”, albeit with “very limited evidence” relating to only two vaccines (AstraZeneca and Pfizer / BioNTech). “No loss” of efficacy or “minimal loss” was noted after one dose of AstraZeneca’s Vaxzevria * and after two doses of Pfizer / BioNTech’s Comirnaty *. A “minimal or modest” loss of efficacy emerged after two doses of Vaxzevria The variant of Sars-CoV-2 first detected in India has now been officially reported in 53 territories, according to the World Health Organization. The data is highlighted by various international media, including the ‘Telegraph’. In addition, WHO has received information from unofficial sources, according to which variant B.1.617 has been detected in another 7 territories, for a total of 60.

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