The delta subvariant of coronavirus, AY.4.2. is now responsible for more than one in ten new infections in the UK. This is according to the large-scale React study conducted by Imperial College London, the latest results of which were published on Thursday. According to the study, 11.8 percent of 841 sequenced positive samples could be assigned to the AY.4.2. subvariant. In total, PCR tests from more than 100,000 people had been evaluated for the study.
According to the findings, the subvariant is probably spreading faster than the previously predominant delta variant. Since the last study in September, the scientists calculated a daily growth of the AY.4.2. portion of 2.8 percent. At the same time, symptomatic disease is less common, the researchers noted.
Typical symptoms, such as loss or alteration of the sense of smell and taste, fever and a new, persistent cough, also occur less frequently in AY.4.2. infections, according to the study. Overall, of course, the less frequent occurrence of symptoms is a good thing, added study leader Paul Elliott.
How the subvariant will affect the course of the pandemic cannot yet be estimated, researcher Christl Donnelly, who was involved in the study, told Sky News. Fewer symptomatic cases meant fewer infected cases would be detected, the researcher said. On the other hand, the absence of symptoms such as coughing could also reduce the risk of infection, she said. The AY.4.2. subvariant is not yet classified as a concern by the World Health Organization (WHO), but is under surveillance.
- source: diepresse.at/picture:pixabay.com
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