Delta variant: UK's actions on spread analysed by Atkins
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The Delta variant has now spawned a double, according to Indian scientists. They recently assigned a rash of new cases in the country with the “Delta plus” designation. With information on the strain still limited, international authorities have questioned the move, but cases have allegedly spilt into other countries.
Where is the Delta plus variant right now?
Authorities initially detected cases of the Delta plus variant in regions across India.
Sequencing turned out 40 samples from three states, scattered across six districts.
Affected states include Kerala, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh.
Some of them – at least 16 – came from Maharashtra, a region covering India’s west coast that has tackled one of its worst Covid outbreaks.
The sequenced cases are just some of many across the world, according to entries on GISAID.
So far, researchers have shared 166 examples via the open sharing database.
And these samples are spread across nine countries other than India.
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Roughly 41 Delta plus cases have emerged in the UK, with infections traced back to April.
But Public Health England (PHE) is yet to distinguish the “plus” variant from Delta.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) currently classes it alongside the Delta variant.
Another designation provided by India is the ominous “variant of concern”.
Health officials use the description to show a variant’s potential for worsening the pandemic.
New variants have to fulfil select criteria before they gain the description.
India’s health ministry believes “plus” is also a more adept spreader and better at binding to lung cells.
Officials think it could also resist antibody treatments currently used to neutralise infections.
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