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June 24, 2021

India fears Covid’s Nepal variant may evade vaccine

 
June 24, 2021

LONDON: India has declared a 'Delta plus' Covid variant to be of concern, amid fears it may evade vaccines more than the original variety, reports British media on Wednesday.

The mutant strain — sometimes known as AY.1, or the Nepal variant — has already spread to three states, despite attempts to suppress it.

Health chiefs in India who are assessing the country's coronavirus crisis have now elevated it from being a variant of 'interest' to one of 'concern'. It carries the K417N mutation — also seen in the South Africa 'Beta' variant — which can help the virus dodge immunity from vaccines and natural infection.

The evolved virus — which has the same features of the original highly- transmissible Indian type — has been spotted in 52 times in the UK. But experts have cast doubts on whether Delta plus should even be considered its own variant.