| 20 April 2024, Saturday |

Lambda COVID-19 variant might be most dangerous, says scientists

New variants and strains of the virus continue to emerge, since the Covid-19 pandemic, and scientists believe that the latest variant ‘Lambda’ might be the most dangerous to date.

A new study ‘SARS-CoV-2 Lambda variant exhibits higher infectivity and immune resistance,’ published on bioRxiv, found that the mutation can evade from neutralizing antibodies and is highly transmissible.

Owing to rapid mutations, the continual emergence of several COVID-19 variants have been reported, among which some are regarded to be variants of concern including the Alpha variant, first identified in the UK, the Beta variant (South Africa), and Delta (India).

Other variants are known as variants of interests and, as a result, researchers keep an eye on the prevalence of these variants since they may pose a global threat.

The Lambda variant, or “C.37” as the lineage has been designated, has been spreading rapidly in South America, particularly in Peru where the earliest documented samples of the virus date from August 2020.

However, it was only flagged up as a “variant of interest” by the World Health Organization on June 14 of this year as cases attributed to the variant had spread noticeably.

In its report in mid-June, the WHO reported that “Lambda has been associated with substantive rates of community transmission in multiple countries, with rising prevalence over time concurrent with increased COVID -19 incidence” and that more investigations would be carried out into the variant.

The WHO noted in its June 15 report that the Lambda variant had been detected in 29 countries, territories or areas in five WHO regions, although it has a stronger presence in South America.

  • alarabiya