New Covid variant dubbed ‘Centaurus’ already ‘detected in 10 countries including UK and US’
Authors: Vanessa Chalmers U.S, Sun Jul 19 2022
BA.2.75, nicknamed Centaurus, was first detected and is spreading rapidly in India.
It is a relative of Omicon, the original strains of which were shown to be more mild Covid illness (BA.1 and BA.2).
Health chiefs, however, do not know how new versions of Omicron (BA.2.75, BA.4 and BA.5) compare.
But it is feared that Centaurus is even more infectious than Omicron strains that have come before it.
The UK has seen 18 cases to date, and is among roughly 10 countries where Centaurus has been detected.
Professor Susan Hopkins, Chief Medical Advisor at UKHSA said: “We are aware of a small number of cases of the emergent variant Omicron BA.2.75 in the UK.
“At this point, it is too early to draw conclusions about the relative transmissibility of this variant, or the illness it may cause, compared to the currently-dominant variants.
“UKHSA is monitoring the situation closely, as we do all data relating to SARS-CoV-2 variants in the UK and around the globe through our world-leading genomic surveillance systems.”
BA.2.75 appears to be spreading faster than other variants in India, Lipi Thukral, a scientist at the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research-Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology in New Delhi, told MedicalXpress.