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People returning to Israel in Ben Gurion Airport
Photo: Shaul Golan
SARS-CoV-2 virus particles which causes COVID-19

Israel says Delta subvariant more contagious than original strain

Health Ministry says newly discovered AY.4.2. is 15% more contagious than primary Delta strain, but not more deadly; adds only six cases have been detected in Israel, and no signs of its spread has been observed

i24NEWS |
Published: 10.26.21, 13:18
The newly uncovered subvariant of the Delta variant of coronavirus, known as AY.4.2., appears to be slightly more contagious but not more deadly than the original strain, the Health Ministry said.
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  • The ministry reported that while initial research into the subvariant indicate it is 15% more contagious than the original Delta variant, it does not appear to be more deadly or vaccine-resistant.
    2 צפייה בגלריה
    This 2020 electron microscope image provided by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases - Rocky Mountain Laboratories shows SARS-CoV-2 virus particles which causes COVID-19, isolated from a patient in the U.S., emerging from the surface of cells cultured in a lab
    This 2020 electron microscope image provided by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases - Rocky Mountain Laboratories shows SARS-CoV-2 virus particles which causes COVID-19, isolated from a patient in the U.S., emerging from the surface of cells cultured in a lab
    SARS-CoV-2 virus particles which causes COVID-19
    (Photo: AP)
    Israel's first case of AY.4.2 - first identified in Britain back in September - was discovered last week in a child who came back to Israel from a trip to Moldova.
    Health officials said that to date, only six cases of AY.4.2 have been detected in Israel, and no signs of its spread within the country have been observed.
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    נמל התעופה בן גוריון
    נמל התעופה בן גוריון
    People returning to Israel in Ben Gurion Airport
    (Photo: Shaul Golan)
    Although experts do not believe the strain is currently particularly concerning, they are monitoring its development.
    In a recent technical briefing, the UK Health Security Agency said this subvariant currently accounts for 6% of all COVID cases detected in the country, and is "on an increasing trajectory."
    The Delta variant remains “by far the most dominant variant in terms of global circulation," Maria Van Kerkhove, World Health Organization COVID technical lead, said during a public session this week.
    "Delta is dominant, but Delta is evolving," she explained, noting that the more the virus circulates, the more likely it is to mutate.

    Republished with permission from i24NEWS
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