The sub-variant AY4.2, which is extremely contagious raises the possibility of a stronger transmissibility that Delta. It is virtually non-existent currently outside of the United Kingdom.
Faced with increased Covid-19 contamination, Britain’s government declared on Tuesday, Oct 19 “Watch very closely”A new sub-variant is now spreading in the United Kingdom. However, it isn’t as established as it would be if it were more contagious. This variant «AY4.2»The sub-variant of highly contagious Delta that first appeared in India. It caused an outbreak of the epidemic in late summer and early fall.
“We will not hesitate if necessary to take action”A spokesperson for Downing Street said that they were happy to help. However, “Nothing suggests it spreads faster than it does”He tried to reassure.
The possibility of a new variant emerging despite the Delta’s strong contagiousness (which tends to eliminate new strains) raises concern about the likelihood of even more transmissibility. It occurs at a time when the United Kingdom, who has lost nearly 139,000 people to Covid-19, is confronted with an increase in positive cases. This number exceeds 40,000 every day, which is a higher rate than elsewhere in Europe.
Scientists attribute the current decline, which mainly affects adolescents and young adults, either to the weakness of vaccination or to the lifting of July in England. Most restrictions, such as indoor masks, are not enforced.
But for François Balloux, director of the Institute of Genetics at UCL, the new variant “It is not the reason for the recent rise in cases in the UK.”. She explained that even though she has a low frequency right now, it is possible to still get her messages. “A 10% greater transmissibility could only have caused a few additional cases”.
AY4.2’s emergence does not mean that it is now. “Not a situation comparable with the emergence and transmission of the Alpha/Delta strains, which were more transmissible (50%+) than any other strains at the time.”The researcher agreed.
Except for three cases in the US, and a few others in Denmark, the new variant AY4.2 is virtually non-existent in other countries. The resistance to vaccines is being tested.