What has happened?
- Right when the world thought it was enough of Covid and it’s time to move on, the deadly virus may have something else in store for humans.
- As per the WHO (World Health Organisation), a Covid variant of mutation called XE has been found in the UK, Which the global health body suggests could be more transmissible than any other Covid strain so far.
- The new revelations comes amid a spurt in COVID-19 cases in the UK, which has again reached record levels, With about 1 in 13 people estimated to be infected with the virus in the past week, Britain’s official statistics shows.
What is XE variant?
- XE is combination or recombinant of both sub-variants (BA.1 and BA.2) of Omicron.
- The recombinant variant appears to be, as per the WHO, 10% more transmissible than the BA.2 sub-variant of Omicron.
- “Early-day estimates indicate a community growth rate advantage of 10 percent as compared to BA.2, however, this finding requires further confirmation,” says the WHO.
- A UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) study recently revealed that currently as many are 3 hybrid COVID variants are circulating.
- The two different combinations of Delta and BA.1 are XD and XF. The third is XE.
Where it was first detected?
- The WHO on April 1 issued a report on its findings about XE.
- “The XE recombinant was first detected in the United Kingdom on 19 January and >600 sequences have been reported and confirmed since,” the WHO research shows.
- Earlier, the UN health agency had issued warnings against Omicron, Delta recombinant virus, saying with both Omicron and Delta circulating in a massive scale, this was highly expected.
BA.2 becoming prevalent
- 2 sub-variant of omicron is fast replacing Omicron BA.1, especially in countries like the US and the UK.
- Both these nations scores best in terms of inoculating their populations.
- Apart from these two nations, China is also reporting a surge in Covid cases; in March alone, the country saw 1.04 lakh Covid cases, a majority of them were found to be in Shanghai and Jilin regions.
- On Sunday, India reported 1,260 fresh COVID-19 cases, taking the total number of Coronavirus infections to 4,30,27,035.
- India also recorded 83 COVID-related deaths in the last 24 hours, according to the Health Ministry.
- The development has come at a time when the world is just on the cusp of removing special restrictions necessitated by the coronavirus pandemic.
- The third wave of the pandemic, triggered by Omicron between December 2021 and February 2022, saw many more cases, but much less severity in cases that were reported.
- Noting this massive decline in severity, health authorities and governments all over the world have been slowly resuming international travel and removing stringent COVID-19 protocols.
- This marked the beginning of the world’s return to normal as we knew.
- In India, as well, a total of five states and UTs, including Delhi, Haryana, Maharashtra, Telangana and West Bengal, have removed the mask mandate in public places, indicating a slow but sure move towards pre-COVID times.
- However, now that a new mutation has emerged which has the potential of spreading faster than any of the variants seen so far, the world is again at a risk of all the progress made towards re-establishing the normal coming undone.
Q) Alzheimer’s and osteoporosis are examples of?
- Communicable diseases
- Degenerative diseases
- Non-communicable diseases
- None of the above