Vietnam detects hybrid of Indian and UK Covid-19 variant

Published May 29, 2021
Medical workers in protective suits stand outside a quarantined building amid the Covid-19 outbreak in Hanoi, Vietnam. — Reuters
Medical workers in protective suits stand outside a quarantined building amid the Covid-19 outbreak in Hanoi, Vietnam. — Reuters

Vietnam Health Minister Nguyen Thanh Long said on Saturday the country has detected a new variant of the coronavirus, a mix of the Indian and UK Covid-19 variants that spreads quickly by air, online newspaper VnExpress reported.

After successfully containing the coronavirus for most of last year, Vietnam is now battling an outbreak that is spreading more quickly.

Nearly 3,600 people have been infected in 31 of its 63 cities and provinces since late April, accounting for more than half of the country's total infections.

"After running gene sequencing on newly detected patients, we have discovered a new variant that is a mix of India and UK ones," Long was quoted as saying.

"More specifically, it is an Indian variant with mutations that originally belong to the UK variant," he said. VnExpress quoted Long as saying Vietnam would announce the newly discovered variant to the world soon.

Vietnam had previously reported seven virus variants: B.1.222, B.1.619, D614G, B.1.1.7 (the UK variant), B.1.351, A.23.1 and B.1.617.2 (the Indian variant).

Laboratory cultures of the new variant, which is much more transmissible than the previously known types, revealed that the virus replicated itself very quickly, explaining why so many new cases appeared in different locations in a short period, Long was quoted as saying.

The Southeast Asian country has registered 6,396 coronavirus cases so far, with 47 deaths.

Opinion

Hoping for miracles
Updated 26 Sep 2021

Hoping for miracles

Pakistan will be exposed to international recrimination if the Taliban revert to their old ways.

Editorial

Updated 26 Sep 2021

Intransigent Taliban

PRIME MINISTER Imran Khan has delivered an effective speech at the UN General Assembly session detailing the salient...
26 Sep 2021

Deadly misinformation

THE distinction between ‘fake’ and ‘authentic’ news is now a concept impossible to escape. In an...
26 Sep 2021

Covid arrests

THE unilateral decision taken by Karachi’s East Zone police to arrest citizens without Covid vaccination cards ...
25 Sep 2021

NAB controversy

THE completion of the four-year term of NAB chairman Javed Iqbal early next month has afforded Prime Minister Imran...
Cabinet ‘inclusivity’
Updated 25 Sep 2021

Cabinet ‘inclusivity’

Voices are being raised questioning when the much-hyped inclusivity the group had talked about will materialise.
25 Sep 2021

Quorum malady

LACK of quorum has become a chronic problem for the present National Assembly which is in the process of becoming a...