XE is a “recombinant” mutant of BA.1 and BA.2 Omicron strains. Recombinant mutations emerge when a patient is infected by multiple variants of Covid.
New Delhi: India’s first case of the coronavirus variant XE has been reported in Mumbai. The XE variant was first found in the UK and is a mutation of two Omicron strains BA.1 and BA.2.
Here’s what we know about Covid variant XE:
- It could be the most contagious Covid variant yet.
- The XE mutation appears to be 10 per cent more contagious than the BA.2 sub-variant of Omicron, says World Health Organisation (WHO).
- WHO says that the XE mutation is currently being tracked as part of the Omicron variant. Omicron symptoms include fever, sore throat, scratchy throat, cough and cold, skin irritation and discoloration and gastrointestinal distress.
- Some 637 cases have been reported since it was first detected in UK on January 19.
- The UK health body is studying three recombinant variants – XD, XE and XF. The XD is the hybrid of the BA.1 Omicron variant and the XF is a recombinant version of the Delta and BA.1.
- Reports quote the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA)’s chief medical officer Susan Hopkins as saying that such variants are known as “recombinant” and usually die off “relatively quickly”.
- The XE variant has also been detected in Thailand and New Zealand. WHO has said further data is required before more can be said about the mutation.
- There is no evidence XE is any more serious in disease severity; all Omicron variants have so far been seen to be less severe.
- XE is a “recombinant” mutant of BA.1 and BA.2 Omicron strains. Recombinant mutations emerge when a patient is infected by multiple variants of Covid.
- The variants mix up their genetic material during replication and form a new mutant, UK experts have said in a paper published in British Medical Journal.
Source : Ndtv.com