Omicron sub-variant highly contagious than original, can even infect booster-vaccinated people: Study

WION Web Team
New Delhi Updated: Feb 02, 2022, 11:53 AM(IST)

(Representative Image) Photograph:( Agencies )

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The study, led by a team of scientists affiliated with the University of Copenhagen and the Danish Health Ministry among other institutions, has not yet been submitted for peer review

The sub-variant of Omicron coronavirus variant, BA.2, is more transmissible than the original one, but the vaccinated people won’t be able to infect others as easily as the unvaccinated, a Danish study has revealed.

The study found that the people infected with the new sub-variant, which quickly became dominant in Denmark, were roughly 33 per cent more likely to infect others, compared to those infected with BA.1—the Omicron variant.

The study, led by a team of scientists affiliated with the University of Copenhagen and the Danish Health Ministry among other institutions, has not yet been submitted for peer review.

"We conclude that Omicron BA.2 is inherently substantially more transmissible than BA.1, and that it also possesses immune-evasive properties that further reduce the protective effect of vaccination against infection," the study's researchers said.

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The study further stated that BA.2 is highly immune to vaccines and can even infect vaccinated and booster-vaccinated people.

But vaccines still played an important role, the study underlined, since both booster-vaccinated and fully vaccinated individuals were less like to get infected and transmit either subvariants, compared to those not vaccinated.

Apart from Denmark, BA.2 cases have also been detected in the United States, Britain, Sweden and Norway.

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More than half of the states in the US have detected BA.2, with a total of 194 confirmed cases nationwide so far, according to a global database of Covid variants.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in a statement Friday, said BA.2 is currently circulating at a very low level in the US

But in Denmark, BA.2 sub-variant accounts for roughly 82 per cent of its cases.

(With inputs from agencies)

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