All you want to know about Omicron –
Now a days we all are hearing this name ‘Omicron’ on news. That it is a variant of coronavirus. Omicron has an unprecedented number of spike mutations, some of which are concerning for their potential impact on the the trajectory of the pandemic. The overall global risk related to the new variant is assessed as very high, Says the WHO. To know more about this, we have to understand first this “omicron”.
What is omicron ?
The constantly mutating coronavirus has been surprising the world repeatedly. Each time with a brand new upgraded version of itself with deadlier transmissibility. After a brief respite from the damages caused by the detrimental delta variant which took the world by storm in the second wave of covid-19.
‘Omicron’ recently has been declared as the latest ‘variant of concern’ by the apex global health body World health organization (WHO).
According to WHO’s official statement, “based on the evidence presented indicator of a detrimental change in covid-19 epidemiology, the TAG-VE has advised WHO that this variant should be designated as a VOC, and the World health organisation has designated B.1.1.529 as a VOC, name omicron.”
Where did this new variant Omicron came from?
Everyone says covid-19 variant Omicron emerged in South Africa, but it was already in Netherlands a week before South Africa reported the new variant to the World Health Organization. Revelations about the variant’s existence in Europe before it was reported in Africa add a new twist to questions about where and how the variant originated. Omicron was named after 15 letter of the Greek alphabet. First in Europe, and now the omicron strain of the coronavirus is looping up across South Africa, United Kingdom, 2 cases in Germany and one in Italy, as the latest variant of concern spreads among the world.
According to the experts, the new variant from South Africa is important because it has large number of mutations, including around 32 inspired protein, some of which are independently associated with immune escape as well as increased transmissibility.
Is this new variant reached in India?
Thankfully the answer is ‘NO’. Scientists and health experts in India have said that new waves of infection are anticipated and unless we act quickly and efficiently the country will possibly see the peat waves.
Vinod Scaria scientist at ( SIR – IGIB) said, India has better tools in hand now compared to two years ago. But the country, had to improve its vaccination drive. Public Health measures health infrastructure and genomic surveillance to be better prepared.
India has been successful in administering more than 100 crore vaccinated dozers, which is great achievement in terms of the huge population but mostly these are single-dose and not the complete two doses of vaccination. Which can be effective in fighting the new strain, if it gets in India.
So, now it is very important that we must strictly follow the infection control guidelines and covid-19 appropriate behavior as a part of our lifestyle.