No scientific evidence suggests a rapid spread of the delta strain or that has severe symptoms, said the head of the Scientific Committee to Counter the Coronavirus Hossam Hosny, according to research from the Ministry of Health.
Hosny added, in a telephone interview with host Sayed Ali on the al-Hadath al-Youm channel that citizens must still adhere to precautionary measures, social distancing, wear masks, not shake hands, and be vaccinated, he said.
Hosny confirmed that infections are increasing in Egypt and that vaccines are effective in addressing mutations of the coronavirus.
The new mutant is “B.1.617.2.1”, or “AY.1” – referred to as “Delta Plus” for short.
The strain is a copy of the delta variant that was first discovered in India last February.
According to a CNN report, the delta plus variant exhibits worrisome features such as increased transmission, stronger binding to lung cell receptors, and a possible decrease in antibody response.
In June, Russia Today reported that the Delta Plus strain was moving faster, which could be the cause of a new, widespread outbreak potentially leading to another global lockdown.
The Indian “Delta Plus” differs from the Chinese Wuhan strain by four basic variants in the S protein, which helps the virus to easily penetrate human cells.
“Delta Plus” is more dangerous than “Delta” because it moves faster inside the body and thus impacts a larger number of organs and tissues, Virologist and director of the Genomic Engineering Laboratory at the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology Pavel Volchkov explained.
People who have been vaccinated against the coronavirus are safe from the strain, but doctors warn that anyone who isn’t immunized and does not practice preventive strategies is at risk of contracting the virus.