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know about the delta variant of the #coronavirus

It’s a version of the coronavirus that has been found in more than 80 countries since it was first detected in India. It got its name from the World Health Organization, which names notable variants after letters of the Greek alphabet.

Viruses constantly mutate, and most changes aren’t concerning. But there is a worry that some variants might evolve enough to be more contagious, cause more severe illness or evade the protection that vaccines provide.

Experts say the delta variant spreads more easily because of mutations that make it better at latching onto cells in our bodies. In the United Kingdom, the variant is now responsible for 90% of all new infections. In the U.S., it represents 20% of infections, and health officials say it could become the country’s dominant type as well.

It’s not clear yet whether the variant makes people sicker since more data needs to be collected, said Dr. Jacob John, who studies viruses at the Christian Medical College at Vellore in southern India.

Studies have shown that the available vaccines work against variants, including the delta variant.

Researchers in England studied how effective the two-dose AstraZeneca and Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines were against it, compared with the alpha variant that was first detected in the U.K.

The vaccines were protective for those who got both doses but were less so among those who got one dose.

It’s why experts say it’s important to be fully vaccinated. And it’s why they say making vaccines accessible globally is so critical.

The Delta variant is more transmissible than other variants but evidence is lacking on whether it will make people sicker than the others, according to doctors and medical experts

The Delta variant has been discovered in 80 countries so far and is known to spread more rapidly than other strains of COVID-19. It is currently the variant that is causing most new infections in the UK and represents about 20% of new infections in the US, The Associated Press reports. It is not yet clear if Delta makes people sicker or is deadlier, according to medical experts and doctors. Based on initial studies, it is believed COVID-19 vaccinations are effective against the Delta variant.

“It’s not clear yet whether the variant makes people sicker since more data needs to be collected, said Dr. Jacob John, who studies viruses at the Christian Medical College at Vellore in southern India.” – The Associated Press

What medical experts and analysts know about the Delta variant
“There is still little data available about whether the delta variant causes more deaths.

There were 42 deaths caused by the delta variant in the UK between February 1 and June 7. Of these, 23 people were not vaccinated, seven died more than 21 days after their first vaccine dose, and 12 died more than two weeks after their second dose.” –

“Several experts said they do not expect the Delta variant to cause a nationwide surge here in the U.S. like the one that occurred last winter. But they do anticipate localized outbreaks in places where vaccination rates remain low.” – Scientific America

“…one study of the delta variant in Scotland from the University of Edinburgh found that while the variant was associated with a doubling in the risk of hospitalization in those infected in the region, the Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines offered a 79% and 60% protection, respectively, against infection two weeks after the second dose. And a study from Public Health England showed that two doses of the Pfizer vaccine were 88% effective against symptomatic disease from the delta variant.” – NPR

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