Deltacron: Cyprus confirms discovery of COVID variant
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According to the NHS the symptoms of Deltacron remain as they have been for most of the pandemic, but scientists are still monitoring it. Experts have noted that new variants are not uncommon, and that Deltacron is not the first and is unlikely to be the last to occur for Covid. There are a number of signs to look out for.
Denis Kinane, an immunologist and Founding Scientist at Cignpost Diagnostics said the main elements of the Deltacron variant are derived from Delta, but its ‘spike protein’, which allows the virus to gain entry to human cells, comes from the Omicron variant.
He said: “In terms of being ‘worried’, this is perhaps not the best stance to take.”
Indeed, he added: “Caution is perhaps a better approach than worry or fear: measured approaches are more conducive to a viable strategy going forward.
“In addition, we are noting with our current ‘presumably omicron’ testing, what appears to be a dichotomy in patient response, some have high viral load and infectivity for approximately six days and others still have high viral load and infectivity after 10 days.”
The immunologist said: “Much of this variation could be due to genetic variation among subjects but could also be due to viral variance.”
He added: “At the moment lots of signs and symptoms have been reported, none majorly consistently and no increase in immune or vaccine evasion, infectivity or virulence (disease severity caused by the virus) have been reported, although it is early.
“This underlines the need for testing surveillance and sequencing to be available. There have been some notable other symptoms, however, such as runny nose, scratchy throat and vertigo which have not typically been associated with Covid strains until now.”
The immunologist said: “Depending on its make-up, it is possible that a new strain could come about that surpasses the effects of prior covid variants. It is difficult to predict, based on the current track record of COVID-19 variants.
“So far, the original variant has been the most destructive in terms of severity of symptoms. Omicron, on the other hand, has been shown in many cases to be more transmissible.”
He said: “While free Covid testing is coming to an end across the UK, it is the fundamental way in which we can protect ourselves.
“While the return to a world that resembles ‘pre Covid’ is taking shape, testing is still a vital element to take forward if we are to identify an uptick in transmission.
“If individuals feel more comfortable to continue wearing masks, then they should do so, and remain sensible and vigilant if they have knowingly come into close contact with an individual who has tested positive.”
The NHS says the main symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are:
- A high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
- A new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
- A loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you’ve noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal.
The health body says most infections with COVID resolve within the first four weeks.
It explains: “Long Covid is an informal term that is commonly used to describe signs and symptoms that continue or develop after an acute infection of Covid”
For some people, symptoms can persist for longer than 12 weeks and may change over time and new symptoms may develop.
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