How Contagious and Severe Is This One Variant? – The World Health Organization (WHO) is reportedly tracking several sublineages of the Omicron variant, including BA.1, BA.1.1, BA.2, and BA.3.

The global health agency is also looking at real-world data on whether, experimentally in hamsters, this Omicron subvariant could cause “more severe disease” under these experimental conditions.

As is known, the most prominent descendants of the new Omicron Covid variant are BA.1 and BA.2. The World Health Organization (WHO) has now said it is tracking another sublineage called BA.3 by looking at real-world data to assess it causes “more severe disease”.

Leading WHO infectious disease expert Maria Van Kerkhove said Omicron still remained a “variant of concern” and that WHO was tracking Omicron across several sublineages.

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Image illustration (pixabay)
Image illustration (pixabay)

“The most prominent ones detected worldwide are BA.1, BA.1.1 and BA.2. There are also BA.3 and other sublineages as well,” he said.

To find out more about this Omicron sublineage, a study entitled ‘Emergence of Omicron third lineage BA.3 and its importance’, published in the Journal of Medical Virology, was conducted in January. The research explains how global health agencies should view Omicron BA.3.

What is Omcron BA.3?

Following the appearance of Omcron in November 2021 in Botswana, WHO classified it as the fifth variant of concern. It was found that Omicron is also the most mutated variant of SARS-CoV-2 so far, having now circulated in 150 countries/regions as of January 8, 2022. Omicron has three lineages BA.1, BA.2, and BA.3.

The study showed that the BA.1 and BA.2 lineages differed in their spike protein but there was no specific mutation for the BA.3 lineage in the spike protein, he said, adding that it was a combination of mutations in the BA.1 and BA.2 proteins. spike.

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When was Omicron BA.3 detected?