While the world is still battling with the different variants of Covid-19, and in recent times, the additional Omicron variant, a new variant of the virus, simply called ‘IHU’ for now, has again been detected in France.
This was revealed in a publication posted on medRxiv on 10th December, 2021, by some academics, who were based at the IHU Mediterranee Infection center.
The said IHU variant, dubbed B.1.640.2, is said to be more contagious than all the other Covid – 19 variants, including the Omnicron variant.
According to the researchers, who detected the IHU variant, the virus contains 46 mutations, more than Omicron, which makes it highly infectious, and more resistant to vaccines.
The published report stated that, about 12 cases of IHU have been spotted so far, near Marseille; and that the tests on the patients, revealed that the strain carries the N501Y mutations, as first seen on Alpha variant, which makes it more transmissible.
The scientists also proved that, the IHU variant carries E484K mutations, which could mean that, “the IHU variant will be more resistant to vaccines.”
However, because the new IHU variant is still being investigated, and yet to be spotted in other countries of the world, the World Health Organization, WHO, has not labelled it a variant of Covid – 19.