Omicron Variant: Driving an Unprecedented Surge of Infrctons Globally
Omicron Variant: Driving an Unprecedented Surge of Infections Globally
COVID-19 has been reported to have caused more than 650 million cases and 6 million deaths till date. COVID variants have appeared at regular intervals-alpha, beta, gamma, delta, and omicron. Since the emergence of the Omicron variant in late 2021, several subvariants have been observed. They’re all considered to be variants of concern, as the virus is circulating at intense levels worldwide.
'Omicron' is driving the current surge of cases in most countries, including India, and is poised to replace "delta" the world over. This variant, with more than 50 mutations, is phylogenetically very different from other variants. The omicron variant spreads rapidly, with an average doubling time of two days. Omicron variants are stronger at evading immunity and antibody treatment. The BA.5 strain of Omicron is currently the dominant subvariant globally and the most contagious so far, and it is capable of evading vaccine-induced immunity.
According to recent studies, the mechanism of action of the new Omicron variant relies on the ACE2 receptor to infect human lung cells. A higher mutation rate of the Omicron variant will challenge the available treatment for SARS-Cov2 in the future; therefore, more scientific insights are required to divulge the possible therapeutics
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