Hyderabad: After the Delta and Delta Plus variants of the Covid-19, a new strain – Kappa – has been discovered and three people infected with this strain of SARS-Cov-2 were recently reported in Uttar Pradesh.
With one of the three patients infected with the Kappa variant succumbing to it, there is a now a sense of fear and uncertainty surrounding it.
What is Kappa variant?
This derivation of the Kappa variant comes from the B.1.617 variant which was first found in Maharashtra. A mutation of the B.1.617 variant, the B.1.617.1 has now been identified as the Kappa variant, while B.1.617.2 represents the already known Delta variant.
Are the cases reported in UP the first in India?
This strain was first found in India in October 2020 across many States. However, the highly infectious Delta variant created more panic, sidelining reports on the Kappa strain.
Why was the Kappa variant not known earlier?
Though it originated along with the Delta variant, according to Niti Aayog member (health) VK Paul, the Kappa variant in India got overshadowed by the former, which could be the reason why not much is known about this strain of virus.
Is it more dangerous?
The World Health Organisation has so far not listed this variant, already found in several countries across the world, as a cause of concern. However, genetic changes in the strain could lead to significant transmission.
Are vaccines effective against the variant?
Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) in a recent study found that Indian-made Covaxin was effective against the Kappa variant. A study at the Oxford University also states that the AstraZeneca vaccine, which is used as Covishield in India is also effective against the Kappa variant.
Now you can get handpicked stories from Telangana Today on Telegram everyday. Click the link to subscribe.