Viruses are known to always mutate, and the Covid-19 virus is no exception. After the Covid-19 virus had mutated and created a new variant, Omicron, now another new variant has emerged. This variant is the Omicron B.2. Then, is this virus more dangerous?
The origin of the appearance of this B.2 variant is not yet known. However, the first appearance was detected in the UK on December 6, 2021 yesterday. Even so, many researchers say this new variant first appeared in South Africa. Some say this variant comes from India and the Philippines.
The spread of this BA.2 variant is quite massive. Citing Deadline, Wednesday (26/1/2022), cases of BA.2 infection have been detected in the United States. Seattle’s Sinclair Broadcasting Station reports that the Washington State Department of Health has confirmed the findings of two BA
This variant has also spread in Denmark, India, and England. According to The United Kingdom Health Security Agency, at least this Omicron-derived variant has been identified in 40 countries. However, the significance of the gene changes in the new variant is not yet known.
Reporting from Reuters, the UK Health Safety Agency has designated BA.2 as the variant under investigation. Denmark’s top infectious disease authority, the Statens Serum Institute (SSI), explained that preliminary calculations showed BA.2 could be 1.5 times more infectious than BA.1.
Currently, the World Health Organization (WHO) is conducting an in-depth investigation of this new variant of BA.2. According to them, in-depth investigation of these variants should be prioritized independently and comparatively with BA.1
Spreading fast in Denmark
The spread of the BA.2 variant occurred massively in Denmark. Anders Fomsgaard, a virologist at the State Serum Institute in Denmark, said that BA.2 had become the dominant form of the virus in his country. The variant now accounts for 65 percent of new BA cases. This indicates that BA.2 was already the dominant strain in the second week of January in Denmark.
Experts predict the peak of the epidemic in Denmark will begin in February, backing from previous predictions.
Nonetheless, Fomsgaard stated that they are not worried about this new variant. This is because so far they have not seen major differences in the distribution of age, vaccination status, breakthrough infection, and risk of hospitalization.
Always take care of your health from the transmission of the Covid-19 virus and its variants by always complying with health protocols, wearing masks, keeping your distance in crowds, and always washing your hands.