Amid threat from Delta variant, vaccine-resistant Epsilon variant of COVID-19 emerges in Pakistan
New Delhi | Jagran Lifestyle Desk: As the dreadful Delta variant of COVID-19 continues its spread in at least 132 countries worldwide as per World Health Organisation (WHO), another COVID-19 variant named Epsilon has reached closer to India in neighbouring Pakistan. First identified in California state of the US in 2020, Epsilon variant of COVID-19 reportedly is resistant to all available vaccines against COVID-19. First detected in California, this variant is reportedly spreading in at least 34 countries across the globe.
According to a report in Pakistani daily The Dawn, at least five cases of the Epsilon variant were detected in Lahore this week.
“Our department had collected 23 suspected samples in Lahore and five of them had been found positive for Epsilon,” Punjab Primary and Secondary Healthcare Department Secretary Sarah Aslam said in an official statement.
What is the Epsilon variant of COVID-19?
Epsilon strain, originally known as CAL.20C has been reported to be the second-most active covid variant in New York City. The variant was most prevalent during the initial weeks of the pandemic when the medical infrastructure in New York was overwhelmed followed by the disturbing imagery of the city's iconic Central Park reported in those days.
The US Center for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC) had earlier declared it a ‘variant of concern’ but was later revised to a ‘variant of interest’. However, on July 6, the World Health Organisation (WHO) designated it under ‘alerts for further monitoring’.
Experts suggest that the Epsilon strain detected in Lahore was highly infectious and almost as transmissible as the Delta variant of COVID-19. Like the rest of the world, the Delta variant of COVID-19 has become the dominant strain of the contagion virus in Pakistan.
Pakistan on Saturday reported 4,950 new cases of Covid-19 along with 65 deaths in the past 24 hours.
Posted By: Mukul Sharma