Nature

Xe Variant No Worse Than Omicron, Says Gagandeep Kang


The new XE variant of COVID-19 is not a cause for concern as it is not likely to cause more severity than Omicron’s other subvariants (BA.1 and BA.2), said the Dr. Gagandeep Kang, microbiologist and professor. at Christian Medical College in Vellore, said Thursday.

“Variants will come because people travel. What we know about the (XE) variant is that it’s not a concern,” Kang said. “We were worried about BA.2 but it didn’t cause more severe disease than BA.1. XE doesn’t cause more severe disease than BA.1 or BA.2,” she said on the sidelines. of a panel discussion organized by John Hopkins Gupta-Klinsky India Institute here.

She added that in a vaccinated population, the XE variant is not something to worry about. The World Health Organization (WHO) has issued a warning against XE, a new variant of Omicron first detected in the UK.

He suggested it may be more transmissible than any strain of COVID so far. XE is a combination — or recombined — of the two sub-variants (BA.1 and BA.2) of Omicron. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) said it detected the first case of XE infection in Mumbai.

However, the Union Health Ministry said the sample believed to be the ‘XE’ variant was analyzed in detail by genome experts from the Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomics Consortium (INSACOG), who have deduces that the genomic constitution of this variant does not correspond to the genomic constitution of the XE variant.

Asked about her views on giving a booster dose to people under 60, Kang said the country does not have enough data to establish the effectiveness of booster doses in people. under 60 years old. Dr Balram Bhargava, Director General of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), echoed this view on the booster dose and said, “I agree with Dr Kang.”

The roundtable was held under the theme “Applying lessons learned from COVID for a stronger health system”. Speaking at the roundtable, Dr Bhargava said the biggest thing India has learned from COVID is that it has become confident.

“We have confidence in the capacity of our health care system,” he said. He acknowledged the need to strengthen the primary health care system to deal with such situations in the future. “We need to invest more in the primary health care system and provide good training which is essential. We need good MBBS doctors with good rain,” Dr Bhargava said.

(Edited by : Anand Singha)


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